Prince Markie Dee, the rapper for Brooklyn hip-hop trio Fat Boys, has died. The group’s manager, Louis Gregory, confirmed the news. “Prince Markie Dee was more than a rapper. He was one of my best and closest friends, ”wrote Gregory. “My heart breaks today because I lost a brother. I will always love you, Mark, and I will appreciate everything you have taught me. “He was 52 years old.
The native Mark Morales, Puerto Rican emcee, founded Fat Boys in 1983 under the name Disco 3 with Damon Wimbley (aka Kool Rock-Ski) and Darren Robinson (aka Human Beat Box). Her first album, Fat Boys from 1984, was produced by Kurtis Blow.
The group’s music achieved widespread commercial success. Her 1987 album Crushin ‘went platinum, and three of her other albums went gold. Her biggest hits were covers of “Wipeout” and “The Twist”. They built their success into a short film career, starring in Krush Groove in 1985 and Disorderlies in 1987.
Dee followed his time with the Fat Boys as a solo artist and songwriter and producer. He had a solo hit with “Typical Reasons (Swing My Way)” and has worked with artists such as Mariah Carey, Jennifer Lopez and Mary J. Blige. He was also a radio personality who hosted the Prince Markie Dee Show on SiriusXM’s Rock the Bells.
Artists like Questlove and Fat Joe paid tribute to Prince Markie Dee and Fat Boys and noted the impact they had on hip-hop culture. “I mean yeah, now we all assume that traditional music really isn’t needed to cold rock a party,” wrote Questlove. “But to see how THOSE cats rocked it back then ???!”