The legendary producer took to Instagram on Tuesday (July 11) to issue a strongly-worded P.S.A. about his late cousin’s lack of inclusion in the 50th anniversary tributes that have been thrown by various networks, companies and institutions this year.
“I respect absolutely NONE of this talk about 50 years of hip Hop that does not include HEAVY D and the Boyz,” Rock wrote underneath a photo of Hev. “He KICKED DOWN the door and paved a way for A LOT OF MOTHERFUCKERS!! I think his smoothness and humbleness makes people forget his impact and relevance in the music business.”
He continued: “I NEED EVERY ONE WHO AGREES ( ESPECIALLY EVERYBODY FOR MONEY EARNING MOUNT VERNON!!) TO REPOST AND SHARE SO WE CAN GET HEV A PROPER TELEVISED TRIBUTE for his achievements and contributions to the game. #HeavyD RIP DWIGHT MYERS.”
Numerous rap legends and cultural icons flooded Pete Rock’s comments section with their approval, with Snoop simply writing: “Facts. Big. Tyme.”
Latifah added: “Heav was my friend. Put us on his tour and showed us what rocking a crowd was About!!! Love to him his family and his Whole Crew!!!!”
Kool DJ Red Alert, Easy Mo Bee, Marlon Wayans and Omari Hardwick also co-signed Pete Rock’s claims.
“I Always Keep Him in Rotation, He Appeal Big Time To A Mass Audience,” Red Alert wrote, while Mo Bee added: “100% approved post #RIPHeavyD” and Wayans said: “I concur.”
“As special as they come!” Hardwick wrote. “Who happened to be a dear bro of mine like yourself. And who btw….was 1 of the few hip hop artists who could equally bring that gift to screen. A very strong actor.”
He added: “I also agree with you my brother … that folk (especially in our culture) who make things look easy while equally possessing humility….usually get overlooked & undervalued. Heav was special & i know he’s smiling with pride & humility at this powerful post from you Rock!”
Heavy D (real name Dwight Myers) was a Jamaican-born rapper, producer and actor. As the leader of Heavy D & The Boyz — which also included G-Whiz, “Trouble” T. Roy and DJ Eddie F — the group dropped five critically-acclaimed albums between 1987 and 1994 before Heavy embarked on a successful solo career.
He broke through to the mainstream after appearing on Janet Jackson’s “Alright” in 1989, which peaked at No. 4 on the Billboard Hot 100 and served as one of the earliest examples of rappers appearing on pop songs. Heavy D then linked up with Michael Jackson in 1992 for a remix of his single “Jam.”
Heavy D also appeared in multiple TV shows and movies, and most notably sang the theme song for MADtv and In Living Color.
Heavy D’s final show was with Eddie F at the 2011 BET Hip Hop Awards in 2011, which marked the pair’s first live televised performance together in 15 years.
He died shortly after on November 8, 2011, at the age of 44 after collapsing outside his home in Beverly Hills. An autopsy revealed the cause of death was a pulmonary embolism (PE) caused by a blood clot in a leg.