Yaheard Artist Spotlight – Biz Markie
Biz Markie got his start on the Long Island Hip Hop scene in the early 80’s as a Beat Boxer. Before he would carve his niche as one of Hip Hop’s greatest entertainers (with his blend of rare samples and pure comedy) he was a young Hip Hopper named Marcel Theo Hall.
Biz Markie’s beat boxing skills and unique style of singing while beat boxing led to his inclusion in the legendary juice crew. The collective featured producer Marley Marl and lyricists Mc Shan, Kool G Rap, Big Daddy Kane, Masta Ace, Craig G, Roxanne Shante with others.
Biz would release his classic debut Goin’ Off and solidify himself as a stand alone force in Hip Hop. It was his 1989 follow up The Biz Never Sleeps, that would spawn one of Hip Hop’s biggest hits to date “Just A Friend”.
The single “Just a Friend” became Markie’s most successful single, reaching #9 on the Billboard charts. The song continues to top music charts as new formats are invented. From Ring Tones, to streams, to digital downloads, back around to flat out remakes, “Just A Friend” is a part of American culture. It would be Biz Markie’s next album I Need A Haircut that would forever change the direction of recorded music.
Markie’s third studio album I Need a Haircut was released on August 27, 1991, on Cold Chillin’/Warner Bros. Gilbert O’Sullivan, who claimed that the album’s “Alone Again” featured an unauthorized sample from his hit “Alone Again (Naturally)” sued Biz Markie and Warner brothers successfully. The claim was upheld in a landmark ruling, Grand Upright Music, Ltd. v. Warner Bros. Records, Inc. It changed the history of music making it so that all samples must be cleared with the original artist before being used.
Biz Markie is a DJ, actor, voice over actor, and has provided music and talent for mainstream television shows like “Yo Gabba Gabba”. Biz Markie is a true Hip Hop legend and pioneer.
Biz Markie “Just A Friend”
Biz Markie On “Yo Gabba Gabba”