Groundbreaking rapper Brother Marquis hailed as ‘legend gone too soon’ after death aged 58

Pioneering rapper Brother Marquis is being hailed as a “legend gone too soon” after his death aged 58.

The member of rap group 2 Live Crew passed away on Monday (03.06.24), according to the band’s social media accounts – which said he had gone to “the upper room”.

A post on its Instagram page announced: “Mark Ross AKA Brother Marquis of the 2 Live Crew has passed away.”

The group’s manager also confirmed the rapper’s death to TMZ and didn’t give any further details on the cause or manner.

But the outlet added: “Sources with direct knowledge say the death appears to be natural, and there isn't foul play suspected.”

Brother Marquis’ death follows the 2017 death of one of 2 Live Crew’s co-founder, Fresh Kid Ice.

Fans filled 2 Live Crew’s social media pages with condolence messages including: “Dang, not Brother Marquis”, and “A legend gone too soon.”

Born Mark D Ross, Brother was featured on many of the group’s most iconic and controversial albums, including the hit 1989 LP ‘As Nasty As They Wanna Be’ – which was briefly ruled to be obscene and sparked the rappers’ arrests in 1990.

The entertainer was born in Rochester, New York, and moved to Los Angeles with his family as a teen.

He caught the eye of 2 Live Crew DJ Mr Mixx due to performances with his early group The Cautious Crew and his rap battle efforts.

Even though he missed out on being a founding member of 2 Live Crew, Brother Marquis was with the group on its groundbreaking 1986 debut album ‘The 2 Live Crew Is What We Are’.

A year after its release the record had peaked at No24 on the Billboard Top R and B / Hip-Hop Albums chart.

It is considered a seminal representation of the Miami bass hip-hop style, which featured drum machines and heavy bass as well as raunchy lyrics – which were banned from US radio.

The group’s controversial ‘As Nasty As They Wanna Be’ album climbed to No29 on the Billboard 200 albums chart, and it was certified double platinum after selling at least two million copies.

One of its best known singles was ‘Me So Horny’, which infamously featured samples of the title line uttered by a Vietnamese prostitute trying to get cash from US soldiers in Stanley Kubrick’s classic Vietnam film ‘Full Metal Jacket’.