Craig Mack, one of the first rappers to make Sean "Puffy" Combs" record label Bad Boy Entertainment a hip-hop powerhouse in the "90s, is dead at age 46.
Following news of his death, a number of his contemporaries have paid tribute online with DJ Scratch writing: "I can not believe this dude is gone".
According to the New York Daily News, Mack died of heart failure in hospital near his home in SC on Monday.
After the success of the original, the song's remix introduced the world to The Notorious BIG, whose debut "Ready To Die" wound up outselling Mack's "Project: Funk Da World" by a significant amount.
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Celebrities have taken to social media to eulogize Craig Mack. It contained the single Flava in Ya Ear, the remix of which reached the US Top 10 thanks in part to an all-star cast of guest rappers: the Notorious BIG, Busta Rhymes, LL Cool J and Rampage. I can not believe this dude is gone.
Brooklyn's DJ Scratch remembered Mack as the hardworking roadie who helped set up and break down his turntables on tours.
In a statement, Toney said, "God bless my friend. He was a good friend of mine", Toney told the newspaper.
"I just got a disturbing phone call". "I wanted the world to know the talent he had". He wasn't scared. He was ready'. "It was something I wanted people to enjoy, but it was cut short because he was very religious and wanted to go to church".
Toney noted that Mack is survived by a wife and two adult children.