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Biz Markie, known for classic rap song ‘Just a Friend,’ dies at 57

FILE - Biz Markie attends the 20th Century Fox press line on Day 2 of Comic-Con International on July 25, 2014, in San Diego. The hip-hop staple known for his beatboxing prowess, turntable mastery and the 1989 classic “Just a Friend,” has died. He was 57. Markie’s representative, Jenni Izumi, said in a statement that the rapper-DJ died peacefully Friday, July 16, 2021, with his wife by his side. No cause of death was released. (Photo by Richard Shotwell/Invision/AP, File)

LOS ANGELES (AP) — Biz Markie, a hip-hop staple known for his beatboxing prowess, turntable mastery and the 1989 classic “Just a Friend,” has died. He was 57. Markie’s representative, Jenni Izumi, said the rapper-DJ died peacefully Friday evening with his wife by his side. The cause of death has not been released. Markie, who real name is Marcel Theo Hall, became known within the rap genre realm as the self-proclaimed “Clown Prince of Hip-Hop” for lighthearted lyrics and a humorous nature. He’s made music with the Beastie Boys, opened for Chris Rock’s comedy tour and was a sought-after DJ for countless star-studded events.


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