Credit: Prince Markie Dee (TheFatBoys (https://commons.wikimedia.org/wiki/File:Prince_Markey_Dee.jpg), „Prince Markey Dee“, https://creativecommons.org/licens

Ambitions of having a stint, let alone a career, in the music industry has permeated the dreams of a few generations. Few have had the opportunity for the former and even fewer have had the latter. Those who’ve managed to forge a career in any aspect of that profession usually have their level of success measured against the names/projects they have their name attached to. With that formula, how would a tenure be judged with the following credits peppering one’s resume: Father MC (“Lisa Baby”), Shabba Ranks “Let’s Get it on,” Mariah Carey “Do You Think of Me,” Lisa Stansfield “Don’t Cry For Me.” Christopher Williams, “Don’t U Wanna Make Love,” Destiny’s Child “Sail On,” and a genre altering, generational defining album Mary J Blige’s first album, “What’s the 411?” on the songs “Slow Down,” “Changes I Been Going Through,” “Sweet Thing” and the superstar cementing single “Real Love.” Not bad by any standards but considering that these are not just unbeknownst to the masses but pale to what you’re known for, you can say when all is said and done, “I MADE IT!” Mark Morales you made it.

Better known as Prince Markie Dee, one-third of the group the Fat Boys (originally the Disco 3), Morales was one of the pillars of hip hop music. Hailing from the borough of Brooklyn, the trio got their entre into the record business as winners of the inaugural WBLS/Tin Pan Apple Breakdance and Rap Contest. Talent throughout the 5 boros of NYC competed in earnest for the opportunity to perform on the heralded Radio City Music Hall stage and, as legend has it, the Disco 3 aimed for a second-place finish, which would have resulted in winning 5,000.00 worth of DJ equipment. A clip on the internet however tells something a little different. In an interview with a foreign television station Prince Markie Dee alongside group members Buffy The Human Beat Box and Kool Rock-Ski, says with the bravado of hip hop and youth, “We just wanna WIN. It’s not just for the record, just to see who’s the best.” On the night of May 23, 1983, radio DJ and host of the finals Mr. Magic declared that on that night the Disco 3 were the best of that competition. In 1984, now known officially as the Fat Boys, they dropped the self-titled debut album, featuring production by then go-to producers Larry Smith, Davy DMX and Kurtis Blow. That began for them a run that is still impressive over the course of a career: 7 studio albums, 3 Gold and one Platinum, feature film roles, including “Krush Groove” and “Disorderlies,” and multiple international arena tours ensued.

After the group disbanded Morales, as Prince Markie Dee, went solo with a pair of albums. Most notably 1992’s “Free,” billed to Prince Markie Dee & the Soul Convention, which produced “Typical Reasons (Swing My Way)” that topped Billboard’s rap chart and “Trippin’ Out,” a top 10 hit. The follow-up, “Love Daddy,” dropped in 1995 with a lukewarm, peaking at No. 91 on the R&B/hip hop albums chart. Morales would again reinvent himself and found a home as a radio personality, where he could be found hosting a show on SIRIUS XM called ‘Rock The Bells.’

One day shy of his 53rd Birthday, Feb. 18, 2021, Mark ‘Prince Markie Dee’ Morales returned to the essence. Hip Hop takes another celebratory final lap by saying:

Marshall Mathers:

So sad 2 hear of the legendary @PrinceMarkieDee of the Fat Boys’ passing. One of my childhood idols & favorite mc’s of all time. Left us way 2 soon. He will truly be missed.

PSALM ONE Woman scientist:

First concert ever: THE FAT BOYS

I was too young to remember it, but my mom always reminds me.

DISORDERLIES is one of the best rap movies forever.

Prince Markie Dee was that dude. Died a day before his birthday, too.

Kids, please look him up.

Fat Joe:

I would be walking and all of a sudden i would hear music ricochet off the walls, it would go huh huh huh ha huh Hu Hu ha Fat Fat Fat boys, Fat Fat Fat boys this was the first song they would play at the block party to summon you to appear. Prince Markie D Morales was a great guy, a Legend and pioneer. God bless my fellow Boriqua brother till we meet again

Dante Ross:

Rest Easy Prince Markie Dee. The Fat Boys were right there with Run DMC and Whodini during the 2nd phase of Hip Hop. They rocked arenas, had hits on the radio and MTV. He was also a songwriter and producer for Mariah Carey, JLo Ariana Grande and a host of other.

Rock The Bells (SIRIUS XM):

The Rock The Bells family is heartbroken to learn of the passing of Mark “Prince Markie Dee” Morales earlier today. That voice and his presence can never be replaced. Our thoughts and prayers go out to his loved ones.

Over and out. Holla next week. Til then, enjoy the nightlife.