Kris Kross star Chris 'mac Daddy' Kelly died from a drug overdose, a coroner has ruled. The rapper was pronounced dead at a hospital in Atlanta, Georgia on 1 May (13) after he was found unresponsive at his home in the city.
An autopsy was carried out the next day (02May13) and now officials at the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office in Atlanta, Georgia has ruled drugs as the official cause of death following the return of toxicology results.
Kelly struggled with substance abuse for years, and reportedly used both cocaine and heroin on the eve of his passing.
His death came three months after Kelly reunited with his Kriss Kross bandmate Chris 'Daddy Mac' Smith in February (13) for a special concert to mark the 20th anniversary of producer Jermaine Dupri's label So So Def Recordings, the company the duo was signed to at the height of their fame in the early 1990s.
Kris Kross star Chris 'mac Daddy' Kelly has died at the age of 34. The rapper was found unresponsive at his home in Atlanta, Georgia on Wednesday (01May13) and transported to Atlanta Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, a representative for the Fulton Country Medical Examiner tells Billboard.com.
The cause of death is not yet known and an autopsy is expected to take place on Thursday (02May13).
Stars flocked to pay tribute to Kelly as news of his death broke, with Timbaland and Big Boi among the first to offer their condolences.
Kelly and his bandmate Chris 'Daddy Mac' Smith were discovered in an Atlanta shopping mall by Jermaine Dupri in 1990 and the hip-hop duo went on to release three studio albums.
They are best known for their hit 1992 song Jump, which spent eight weeks at number one on the Billboard Hot 100 and sold more than 100,000 copies as a VHS video single, as well as for wearing their clothing backwards.
Kris Kross performed on Michael Jackson's 1992 Dangerous World Tour and even had a cameo in his music video for Jam. They also appeared in promos for Run-D.M.C. and TLC, and featured in an episode of TV sitcom A Different World.
Kelly and his bandmate found fame with a new audience in the mid-1990s when they recorded a rap for Nickelodeon kids' cartoon Rugrats - it went on to appear on VHS copies of the show from 1994 and was released on CD in 1998.
The duo disbanded after the release of their third album, 1996's Young, Rich & Dangerous, and went on to have solo careers.
They reunited earlier this year (13) to perform at a special concert to mark the 20th anniversary of Dupri's label So So Def Recordings.
In his personal life, Kelly was an avid kite flyer - he entered several national competitions and was planning to start a kite design company.
David Mitchell's novel Cloud Atlas consists of six stories set in various periods between 1850 and a time far into Earth's post-apocalyptic future. Each segment lives on its own the previous first person account picked up and read by a character in its successor creating connective tissue between each moment in time. The various stories remain intact for Tom Tykwer's (Run Lola Run) Lana Wachowski's and Andy Wachowski's (The Matrix) film adaptation which debuted at the Toronto International Film Festival. The massive change comes from the interweaving of the book's parts into one three-hour saga — a move that elevates the material and transforms Cloud Atlas in to a work of epic proportions.
Don't be turned off by the runtime — Cloud Atlas moves at lightning pace as it cuts back and forth between its various threads: an American notary sailing the Pacific; a budding musician tasked with transcribing the hummings of an accomplished 1930's composer; a '70s-era investigatory journalist who uncovers a nefarious plot tied to the local nuclear power plant; a book publisher in 2012 who goes on the run from gangsters only to be incarcerated in a nursing home; Sonmi~451 a clone in Neo Seoul who takes on the oppressive government that enslaves her; and a primitive human from the future who teams with one of the few remaining technologically-advanced Earthlings in order to survive. Dense but so was the unfamiliar world of The Matrix. Cloud Atlas has more moving parts than the Wachowskis' seminal sci-fi flick but with additional ambition to boot. Every second is a sight to behold.
The members of the directing trio are known for their visual prowess but Cloud Atlas is a movie about juxtaposition. The art of editing is normally a seamless one — unless someone is really into the craft the cutting of a film is rarely a post-viewing talking point — but Cloud Atlas turns the editor into one of the cast members an obvious player who ties the film together with brilliant cross-cutting and overlapping dialogue. Timothy Cavendish the elderly publisher could be musing on his need to escape and the film will wander to the events of Sonmi~451 or the tortured music apprentice Robert Frobisher also feeling the impulse to run. The details of each world seep into one another but the real joy comes from watching each carefully selected scene fall into place. You never feel lost in Cloud Atlas even when Tykwer and the Wachowskis have infused three action sequences — a gritty car chase in the '70s a kinetic chase through Neo Seoul and a foot race through the forests of future millennia — into one extended set piece. This is a unified film with distinct parts echoing the themes of human interconnectivity.
The biggest treat is watching Cloud Atlas' ensemble tackle the diverse array of characters sprinkled into the stories. No film in recent memory has afforded a cast this type of opportunity yet another form of juxtaposition that wows. Within a few seconds Tom Hanks will go from near-neanderthal to British gangster to wily 19th century doctor. Halle Berry Hugh Grant Jim Sturgess Jim Broadbent Ben Whishaw Hugo Weaving and Susan Sarandon play the same game taking on roles of different sexes races and the like. (Weaving as an evil nurse returning to his Priscilla Queen of the Desert cross-dressing roots is mind-blowing.) The cast's dedication to inhabiting their roles on every level helps us quickly understand the worlds. We know it's Halle Berry behind the fair skinned wife of the lunatic composer but she's never playing Halle Berry. Even when the actors are playing variations on themselves they're glowing with the film's overall epic feel. Jim Broadbent's wickedly funny modern segment a Tykwer creation that packs a particularly German sense of humor is on a smaller scale than the rest of the film but the actor never dials it down. Every story character and scene in Cloud Atlas commits to a style. That diversity keeps the swirling maelstrom of a movie in check.
Cloud Atlas poses big questions without losing track of its human element the characters at the heart of each story. A slower moment or two may have helped the Wachowskis' and Tykwer's film to hit a powerful emotional chord but the finished product still proves mainstream movies can ask questions while laying over explosive action scenes. This year there won't be a bigger movie in terms of scope in terms of ideas and in terms of heart than Cloud Atlas.
While it’s been 15 years since the world lost Christopher George Latore Wallace, a.k.a. Notorious B.I.G. a.k.a. Biggie Smalls a.k.a. Big Poppa, his mark on music and pop culture in undeniable. March 9 is the anniversary of Wallace’s passing, and it’s only right that we spend the day honoring him. From music, to documentaries, to movie moments and delectable treats, there’s a way for everyone to celebrate Biggie’s life and career.
Listen to Life After Death In Its Entirety
Take the afternoon (or the evening if you’re at work), plug in some great headphones and really listen to all 25 tracks on Wallace’s last album. While the album is an appropriate honor in timing alone - it was released shortly after Wallace’s shocking passing - it also signaled a huge shift for the gangsta rap subgenre. Following the release of Life and Death, Sean Combs’ Bad Boy Records continued to merge elements of mainstream pop and gangsta rap, signalling a shift to cleaner, more radio-friendly tracks. And if you need an intro to the album, just know it’s the one that introduced his giant hit “Hypnotize” to the masses.
Skip Notorious, Watch Biggie and Tupac
When it comes to learning about Wallace in biopic form, avoid the reenactment of his life that is 2009’s Notorious. It’s more fitting to opt for the realistic look at the conspiracy surrounding his and fellow rapper Tupac’s untimely deaths with 2002’s Biggie and Tupac. The film includes an interview with Wallace’s mother, Voletta Wallace, who helps to paint a humanizing, touching picture of her late son. It’s an element integral to his memory, moving our consciousness beyond the less flattering elements of his personal life.
Find Your Favorite Biggie Movie Scene
Since Wallace’s passing, his music has become the go-to soundtrack for debauchery and poignancy alike. From films like The Wackness to even teen rom-coms like 10 Things I Hate About You, Biggie provides the soundtrack to some of our favorite moments. Mine happens to be this party scene with a young Julia Stiles and the late Heath Ledger.
For the Over-Acheiver: Visit The Golden Krust Bakery on Fulton Street in Brooklyn
If you can’t get to Brooklyn, that’s fine. These places are all over Connecticut, Florida, Georgia, New Jersey, Maryland, North Carolina and Pennsylvania. West Coasters, better luck next year. But for those close enough to the Big Apple - or ambitious enough to try and make it out there by 12 a.m. ET - this is great way to get a closer to the rap icon. This is the actual establishment Wallace used to frequent, and as his former co-manager Wayne Barrow told TribecaFilm.com, it’s “where he used to hustle, eat his little chicken wings when he was broke. That's what Brooklyn was about.”
Watch The “I’ll Be Missing You” Video
It’s only fitting that you watch the video and listen to the song that was created by Wallace’s own friends to celebrate his memory. The song features the sample of The Police’s “Every Breath You Take” as well as then-Puff Daddy and Wallace’s former wife, Faith Evans. This day wouldn’t be complete without it.