Nobody beats the Biz!
Marcel Theo Hall, known professionally as Biz Markie was born in Harlem in 1964. Growing up in the golden age of hip hop, he emerged as a talent during the ‘80s, getting his start as a beatboxer for rapper Roxanne Shanté. Biz parlayed that success into a successful solo career, releasing his debut album Goin’ Off in 1988. Best known for his jovial spirit and the playfulness he brought to the musical genre, Biz earned a string of popular hits including “Vapors,” “Nobody Beats the Biz,” and his timeless hit, “Just a Friend,” which was named as one of VH1s top 100 greatest hip-hop songs of all time.
One of the most successful entertainers of his time, Biz continued to perform while also earning television credits on hit shows like Yo Gabba Gabba, Spongebob Squarepants, Nick Cannon Presents: Wild ‘n Out, The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon, and In Living Color. He has been featured in a number of commercials and continued to tour as a DJ and performer up until his passing on July 16, 2021. Now the legendary Juice Crew member is getting his own documentary, set to premiere on Showtime on the 50th anniversary of hip-hop, Black Enterprise reports.
All Up In The Biz, is directed by Sacha Jenkins, focusing on the “life, career and cultural impact” of the late rapper. The film will feature interviews, behind the scenes footage and puppetry, paying homage to the “Clown Prince of Rap.” Fellow entertainers Tracy Morgan, Nick Cannon, and Fat Joe all make appearances to talk about his life and legacy, alongside hip hop veterans Doug E. Fresh, Big Daddy Kane and Darryl “D.M.C.” McDaniels of Run DMC.
“Biz Markie is the pure essence of hip-hop. He believed in, he lived it, he harnessed its powers. Most people don’t know that he used those powers to power up some of the culture’s greatest poets and then some. I was fortunate to meet with Biz when he was alive so to have the opportunity to bring him back to life now that he isn’t here…it’s a special film,” said Jenkins.
The movie is the most recent music documentary from Jenkins, who has also directed Word Is Bond, Wu-Tang Clan: Of Mics and Men, and B****in’: The Sound And Fury of Rick James. After his passing, a street in Long Island, New York was named in Biz’s honor. The film will help to further preserve his legacy and introduce a new generation to the hip hop pioneer.
All Up In The Biz is set to release on Showtime on August 11th, the 50th birthday of hip-hop.
Cover photo: New Showtime doc about legendary rapper Biz Markie set to release on Hip Hop’s 50th birthday/Rapper Biz Markie, 1988/Photo Courtesy of David Corio/Redferns/Michael Ochs Archives/Getty images