Former Bad Boy Records rapper Craig Mack dies at 46

Former Bad Boy Records rapper Craig Mack dies at 46

Hip-hop pioneer and Long Island native Craig Mack, best known for the platinum 1994 hit "Flava in Ya Ear", has died in SC.

Flava in Ya Ear was the first release on Combs' label Bad Boy Records, which became one of the most significant in hip-hop history, launching the careers of the Notorious BIG, Mase, Faith Evans, Janelle Monáe and French Montana.

Released nearly 25 years ago in 1994, it tore the roof off of Hip Hop thanks to its all-star remix that featured LL Cool J, Busta Rhymes, The Notorious B.I.G. and Rampage. Mack vacated the limelight and devoted himself to religion, specifically Overcomer Ministry, which is in SC.

The New York Daily News reports Mack died of heart failure near his SC home on Monday. He was a good friend of mine.

Toney had just gone to see Mack last week to film a documentary he was working on about the Mack's choice to dedicate his life to religion.

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Alvin Toney who spoke in a chat with Daily News confirmed the shocking news as he insisted: 'He was prepared for whatever comes, to go home to the Lord. I wanted the world to know the talent he had. I can not believe this dude is gone.

Toney said Mack later confided in him that he'd been sick for some time.

According to EPMD's Erick Sermon, Mack was working on a new album.

Born in Queens, New York, Craig Mack would later leave NY and rap music in exchange for the South.

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