The top ten rappers who died young

LIKE so many famous rappers before him, Kris Kross star Chris ‘Mac Daddy’ Kelly has died young.  He died on Wednesday!
Notorius BIG. Net photo.
Notorius BIG. Net photo.

LIKE so many famous rappers before him, Kris Kross star Chris ‘Mac Daddy’ Kelly has died young.  He died on Wednesday!

The Jump singer – who found fame in the 90s as one half of the hip-hop duo – was found unconscious in his Atlanta home on Wednesday.

An autopsy will determine the cause of death – although Billboard is reporting a “possible drug overdose.” He was just 34.

The much-loved star - famous with Chris ‘Daddy Mac’ Smith for wearing his trousers backwards - is tragically not the only rap star to lose his life at a young age.

Here are ten other gone-too-soon hip-hop gods:

1) Proof

One of Eminem’s best pals, MC Proof - real name DeShaun Dupree Holton - was a part of the Stan rapper’s D12 group.

One of the most prominent members of the group, he toured extensively with Eminem and appeared on the Up In Smoke Tour in 2000.

But the dad-of-five got into a boozy row at Detroit’s CCC club on April 11 2006 and shot fellow reveller Keith Bender in the head.

Bender’s cousin then shot Proof four times in self-defence. The club was closed down for operating illegally a month later.

2) Nate Dogg

Nate Dogg - real name Nathaniel Dwayne Hale - is best known for his collaboration on 1994 smash Regulate.

The hit - recorded with rapper Warren G - ironically appeared on the soundtrack to Above The Rim, a basketball film starring Tupac Shakur.

The singer suffered a stroke on December 19 2007 that paralysed the left side of his body.

He suffered a second stroke in September 2008 and died from complications of the multiple strokes in March 2011.

3) 2Pac

Perhaps the most iconic rapper to lose his life young, Tupac Shakur was shot dead at the age of 25 in September 1996.

A vocal participant in the so-called East Coast-West Coast rivalry of US rappers, he was known for huge hits California Love and Changes.

He was shot dead in a drive-by shooting in Las Vegas after visiting town to watch the Mike Tyson-Bruce Seldon boxing match.

No suspect was ever arrested for the crime but investigative journalist Chuck Philips has put forward the case to suggest a member of LA’s Southside Crips gang pulled the trigger in revenge for an earlier attack by Shakur.

4) Lisa ‘Left Eye’ Lopes

Lisa, best known by her stage name Left Eye, was part of huge US R&B/hip-hop group TLC.

The girls had hits with songs No Scrubs, Waterfalls and Creep, selling more than 65million records.

A big future as a solo artist beckoned but tragically Lisa was killed in a car accident after losing control of her vehicle while on holiday in Honduras in April 2002

5) Notorious B.I.G.

Just 24 when he died, Biggie - real name Christopher George Latore Wallace - was shot dead as he drove home from a party in Los Angeles in March 1997.

Several theories surround the drive-by shooting - which has never been solved - and British documentary filmmaker Nick Broomfield made Biggie & Tupac to chase up leads suggesting a link between the two murders.

Pal and collaborator Sean Puffy Combs released his biggest hit to date, I’ll Be Missing You, in tribute to the larger-than-life star.

With hits including Mo Money Mo Problems and Hypnotise, he has sold 17million records in America alone.

6) Eazy-E

Known as The Godfather of Gangsta Rap hypeman Eazy-E - real name Eric Lynn Wright - was part of iconic hip-hop group N.W.A.

Never the best lyricist, his distinctive high-pitched delivery and violent message made him a star.

Eazy parted ways with fellow rappers Dr. Dre and Ice Cube in 1994 after a string of hits including Express Yourself and Straight Outta Compton.

He was rushed to hospital in early 1995 with suspected asthma but diagnosed instead with AIDS.

He died just a month after his diagnosis in March that year.

7) Big Punnisher

Puerto Rican rapper Big Pun - real name Chrisopher Rios - got his start rapping on tracks by the Beatnuts.

His solo career debut, I’m Not A Player, was a big hit in 1997 and made him the first solo Latino rapper to go platinum.

Even bigger success was predicted for the star but he died after a heart attack brought on by morbid obesity in February 2000.

He was just 29 - but weighed more than 50 stone.

8) Scott La Rock

The first well-known rap artist to die young, DJ La Rock formed the hip-hop group Boogie Down Productions with lyricist KRS-One.

Their only released album, Criminal Minded, is considered highly influential and was picked as one of The Source magazine’s 100 Best Rap Albums.

Scott was just 25 when he was gunned down after trying to intervene in a dispute between friends and another group in New York in 1987.

9) Ol’ Dirty Bastard

Ol’ Dirty Bastard - real name Russell Tyrone Jones - was a member of hip-hop groug The Wu-Tang Clan along with rappers RZA, Method Man and Ghostface Killah.

The true wild card of the group, ODB wrestled with drugs and mental illness throughout his life, going in and out of jail in between recording albums.

He died from a lethal cocktail of cocaine and Tramadol in November 2004, collapsing on the floor of RZA’s studio. He was 35.

10) Guru

Better known by his stage name Guru, Keith Edward Elam was an American MC and member of hip-hop duo Gang Starr.

He also lent his voice for 8-Ball in computer games Grand Theft Auto III and Grand Theft Auto: Liberty City Stories.

The rapper fell prey to cancer and died following a heart attack-induced coma at the age of 43 in 2010.

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