Biz Markie will always be known as one of Hip Hop’s most unique talents, and now the late rapper’s life is being honored in a new documentary.
On Monday (July 17), the trailer for All Up In The Biz was released featuring tons of archival footage of the late rapper and interviews with some of his closest friends, including Darryl “D.M.C. McDaniels from Run-DMC, Doug E. Fresh and Big Daddy Kane, to name a few.
The documentary was directed by Sacha Jenkins who is responsible for other artist-centered documentaries including Wu-Tang Clan: of Mics and Men, and Bitchin’: The Sound And Fury of Rick James. He spoke to Southern Laced about the impact that Biz Markie had on Hip Hop and her forthcoming project.
“Biz Markie is the pure essence of Hip Hop,” he said. “He believed in [it], he lived it, he harnessed its powers. Most people don’t know that he used those powers to power up some of the culture’s greatest poets and then some. I was fortunate to meet with Biz when he was alive so to have the opportunity to bring him back to life now that he isn’t here … it’s a special film.”
All Up In The Biz will premiere on both Paramount+ and SHOWTIME on August 11.
Born Marcel Theo Hall in 1964, Biz Markie got his start in New York City before relocating to Washington D.C. In 1988, Biz dropped his debut album Goin Off, which includes the singles “Make the Music With Your Mouth, Biz,” “Nobody Beats the Biz”, “Vapors” and “Pickin’ Boogers.”
The comedic nature of his music soon earned him the nickname “The Clown Prince of Hip Hop” and he continued pumping out albums throughout the late ’80s and early ’90s.
But it was his 1989 sophomore album The Biz Never Sleeps that catapulted him to international notoriety, thanks in part to the hit single “Just a Friend.” The track reached No. 9 on the Billboard Hot 100, while the album peaked at No. 66 on the Billboard 200.
The Juice Crew icon lost his fight with Type II diabetes in July 2021. At the time of his death, there was an outpouring of support from his friends, including Q-Tip, Snoop Dogg, DJ Scratch, Parliament-Funkadelic’s Bootsy Collins and many more.
A few months after his passing, Biz Markie was honored with a street bearing his namesake in Long Island, New York.
Biz’s widow, Tara Davis, took to Instagram at the time to reveal the news, writing: “HONORARY STREET NAMING DEDICATION! In honor of the contributions Biz has achieved as an actor, beatboxed, DJ and philanthropist, his hometown of Patchogue Long Island will honor him with the renaming of South Street to Biz Markie Way!”