'The Message' Co-Writer Duke Bootee Died From Congestive Heart Disease

The New York native, who began his career as a rapper and producer, but retired in the early 1990s, passed away at his home in Savannah, Georgia on January 13 at the age of 69.

AceShowbiz - The co-writer of hip-hop classic "The Message" has died, aged 69.

Duke Bootee passed away at his home in Savannah, Georgia on 13 January after suffering from congestive heart disease.

Born Edward Gernel Fletcher, the New York native, who was raised in New Jersey, began his career as a rapper and producer, and was working as a member of the house band at Sugar Hill Records when he shot to fame after teaming up with Melle Mel to create "The Message", the seminal 1982 hit for the hip-hop star's group, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five.

The group is acknowledged as one of the first hip-hop groups to gain mainstream attention. The pals later also collaborated on tracks like "Message II (Survival)" and "New York New York" for Melle Mel's band, as well as "Sun City", the all-star single by protest group Artists United Against Apartheid.

Bootee went on to release his one and only solo album, "Bust Me Out", in 1984, and penned and produced songs for artists like Snoop Dogg, Sean "P. Diddy" Combs, Ice Cube, Dr. John and The Rolling Stones' Bill Wyman.

Bootee was largely inspired by the gritty industrial city and used his experiences in his music. He incorporated that into "The Message", writing most of the song's lyrics and the melody.

He retired from the music industry in the early 1990s and began a new career as an educator. He obtained teaching certification and became a vice principal in a New Jersey school before relocating to Georgia, where he worked as a lecturer in critical thinking and communication at Savannah State University.

He retired in 2019.

Follow AceShowbiz.com @ Google News

You can share this post!

You might also like