Often referred to as ‘the OG of humorous hip-hop’, Biz Markie was the booming voice of the ‘80s.
Born Marcel Hall from Long Island, The Biz came up under Marley Marl after meeting him in 1985, and began applying his beatboxing skills to artists connected to Marl’s musical circle.
The hip-hop scene was wildly experimental during this era, and New York was developing its own sounds and tastes within different communities. In 1988, the West Coast had N.W.A detailing police brutality and gang violence with their Straight Outta Compton record. On the East Coast, Biz was focusing on hip-hop being melodic and uncanny at the same time, but remaining street orientated in its delivery and performance. That same year, Biz signed to Cold Chillin’ Records and released his debut album – Goin’ Off.
Produced entirely by Marley Marl, his hit singles Pickin’ Boogers, Vapors and Make The Music With Your Mouth, Biz were underground hits, and the subsequent hype on the street made Goin' Off shine.
The Source has also added Goin' Off into their list of 100 greatest hip-hop albums of all time, and is widely sampled by artists today.