Born: May 10, 1970
Died: March 12, 2018
Birthplace: The Bronx, NY
Place of Death: Walterboro, SC
Zodiac Sign: Taurus
Craig Jamieson Mack was an American rapper and record producer. He helped build the foundation for Bad Boy Records, one of hip hop’s most influential labels.
Mack began rapping as a teenager under the name MC EZ and released one single in 1988, "Just Rhymin'" backed with “Get Retarded,” as part of MC EZ & Troup. Mack then became friends with fellow Long Island hip hop act EPMD and eventually went on tour with the duo, doing jobs as a roadie. After a few years without forward movement in his recording career, Mack took advantage of an opportunity to rap for Sean Combs, and secured a record deal with Combs’s newly founded label, Bad Boy. Mack is best known for his 1994 hit, "Flava in Ya Ear".
His first single "Get Retarded/Just Rhymin'" was released under the name MC EZ in 1988 on Fresh Records. Mack is best known for his 1994 hit single "Flava In Ya Ear", which was released under his real name. The remix of the single was the breakout appearance of The Notorious B.I.G., as well as one of the first solo appearances by Busta Rhymes. While Mack was technically the first rapper to release music on Bad Boy Records, the success of The Notorious B.I.G.'s debut album Ready to Die, which released exactly seven days before Mack's debut album Project Funk da World, overshadowed Mack's early success on the label.
Although Sean Combs mentioned in a 1994 interview on MTV's Yo! MTV Raps that he was working with Mack on his second album, which was to be released sometime in January the following year, this proved to not be the case. Present at that interview (which also included The Notorious B.I.G.), Mack himself appeared puzzled by the statement. Mack did release a second album in 1997, but none of the singles charted and Mack was unable to repeat his success. In an interview, The Notorious B.I.G. says he appeared on the remix of "Flava In Ya Ear" for political reasons for Combs. In 2002, Mack would appear in the music video for Puffy's single "I Need a Girl (Part One)".
After a few attempts to return to success in the early-2000s, it was said that Mack was working on his third studio album in 2002, which was set to be released in 2007. The single "Mack Tonight" was released for the album in 2006.
Mack died on March 12, 2018 from heart failure at a hospital near his home at Walterboro, South Carolina. According to DJ Scratch, he was ill for some time before his death and was prepared for a grim outcome. Mack was apparently suffering from heart failure, having developed shortness of breath from around six months before his death when, according to rapper Erick Sermon, he called his friends to bid farewell. Following Mack's death, Sermon wrote on Twitter that he was finishing work on Craig Mack's new album. Mack is survived by his wife and two adult children. Source.