R.I.P. Rammellzee

"Hip-hop pioneer and graffiti artist RAMMELLZEE has died.

The New York artist passed away on Tuesday (29Jun10), although further details about his cause of death had not been revealed as WENN went to press.

Born in 1960 in Queens, Rammellzee began his career as a graffiti writer and artist, before turning his attention to a rap career.

He established himself as one of the leading voices of New York hip-hop in the 1980s and has influenced acts such as The Beastie Boys and Cypress Hill.

He was a member of the Death Comet Crew with pals Stewart Albright and Michael Diekmann and the trio reunited in 2003 for a rare gig in the Big Apple, prompting the re-release of their work from the early 1980s.

Rammellzee released his debut album, Bi-Conicals of the Rammellzee, in 2004."