Blowfly Dead at 76, Hip-Hop Community Reacts
The hip-hop community is mourning the loss of rapper Blowfly today (Jan. 17). The artist, born Clarence Reid, passed away at 76 after a battle with terminal liver cancer.
A message on his official Facebook page revealed the news of his death. "Clarence Reid, the genius known both by his given name and as Blowfly, the Master of Class, passed peacefully today, January 17th, in his hospice room," his drummer Tom Bowkercc wrote. "His sister Virginia and I thank you for all the love you have shown this week. We also thank you for supporting Clarence's 50 + year music career - especially these last few years. We love you and will keep you informed on services and tribute performances in Clarence's honor."
The Georgia-born, Miami-bred artist found success in the music business as a songwriter for the likes of Betty Wright, KC & the Sunshine Band and Bobby Byrd, to name a few. He even released his own songs like the funky jam "Nobody But You Babe." However, there was another side to the Clarence Reid that many knew and that was Blowfly, the "original dirty rapper." His rhymes were explicit and raunchy and his choice of clothing came in the form of a mask and cape seen in comic books. According to his website, he was the first rapper to have a song banned.
As Clarence Reid he dropped three albums but it was his work as Blowfly that found him releasing 26 projects. While he had efforts like Rappin' Dancing & Laughin that showcased his passion for rapping, he also had a fondness for X-rated titles like Porno Freak, Black in the Sack and Analthology: The Best of Blowfly. One of his more popular tracks was "Rapp Dirty," which dropped in 1980. With lines like, "If the world should end I'll be under no strain / I'd blast right off with my ding-a-ling" and "I grabbed the bitch by the hair and then headed for the room / She had a fine body, but a face like a coon," his rhymes weren't meant for prude types.
In 2011, his story was told in the documentary, The Weird World of Blowfly, which shares the same name as his debut album as Blowfly.
Last week, a message was posted to his Facebook page about his fight with cancer. DJ Premier expressed his fondness for Reid. "Just saw the Legend "Blowfly" has terminal cancer & is in Hospice care..Ur Dirty Raps got me thru High School in the 80's. @BlowflyOfficial," he wrote.
As news of his death emerged, many artists in the hip-hop community shared their thoughts on his passing through Twitter. "RIP Clarence Reid a.k.a. Blowfly. Your Music is classically Funky," DJ Quik tweeted. "RIP and respect to the ORIGINAL. 'Blowfly,'" Ice T wrote. Just Blaze, El-P, Pete Rock and more also offered their sentiments on his death.
Check out how the hip-hop community is remembering Clarence Ried aka Blowfly. RIP.
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