R.I.P. DJ Mark The 45 King

DJ Mark The 45 King

DJ Mark The 45 King died last Thursday morning at age 62. DJ Premier was among the first to report his passing on his Instagram page. The producer was behind some of hip-hop’s most famous tracks as a producer and remixer. Queen Latifah’s debut album All Hail The Queen, Jay-Z’s “Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)” and Eminem’s “Stan” are just a few of the projects that he graced with his skills. The starting point of his career came with “The 900 Number” breakbeat he released in 1987. The track would be sampled in other popular songs like DJ Kool’s “Let Me Clear My Throat” and UK DJ Chad Jackson’s “Hear The Drummer (Get Wicked).” He was born Mark Howard James but got his DJ name because of his affinity for using rare 45 records to make beats. James’s configuration of horn samples and bottomless drums was a trademark of his sound. In 2022, Westbound Records released a set of five 45s called Westbound Beats mixed by James. The producer mined the label’s archive including unreleased music from Junie Morrison and The Ohio Players to create new tracks.