Hip-hop suffered a grave loss Thursday (Feb. 8) with sources close to Lovebug Starski confirming that the rap pioneer has passed away.
As confirmed by Jonathan Shecter, the co-founder of the iconic Source magazine, Lovebug Starski "died suddenly and unexpectedly in Las Vegas at age 60." He also confirmed that the hip-hop legend had been performing at various venues in Sin City recently, joining KRS-One on stage just last week.
While details surrounding his passing are still unknown, the hip-hop community has begun to react, with many reflecting on his undeniable influence on hip-hop culture during the genre's formative years.
A proud Bronx native, born Kevin Smith, Lovebug Starski was an MC, DJ and producer, most notably credited for coining the phrase "hip-hop" to describe the blossoming youth culture in the early 70s. He also was known for his impressive ability to rap and mix records simultaneously, as well as was immortalized on Biggie's timeless classic, "Juicy."
From being a resident DJ at staple venues such as Harlem World and Disco Fever, among countless others, to collaborating with the likes of Kurtis Blow, DJ Hollywood, Brucie B, and more, his influence on hip-hop will never be forgotten.
REVOLT TV sends its condolences to his family and loved ones during this difficult time. Take a look at some reactions to the untimely passing of Lovebug Starski from the hip-hop community, below.
Some terrible news: hip-hop legend Lovebug Starski has died suddenly and unexpectedly in Las Vegas at age 60. ☹️ Very sad. The man was a gifted entertainer, a warm, generous soul. He had been rocking Vegas venues and joined KRS-One on stage last week. Rest peacefully good sir. pic.twitter.com/kHggNAbIsS— Jonathan Shecter (@SheckyGreen) February 9, 2018
We Lost One Of Our Greatest Pioneers Of Hip Hop...— DJ Premier (@REALDJPREMIER) February 9, 2018
He Is Also Known As One Of The People Who Came Up With The Name "HIP HOP" Aside From Another Legend "Keith Cowboy" Of "The Furious 5"...
Salute To All The Pioneers and Condolences To His Family.#HipHop pic.twitter.com/AH4bNrSIOg
Plush events wont be the same without Lovebug Starski.He passed away today. When I took this picture of him last night he was on the phone with Eric B he knew everybody!Dude did our February 7th party here in Vegas and as always had the crowd hyped. He will be missed #restinbeats pic.twitter.com/mTa43RuFak— PLUSH BBW Las Vegas (@PLUSHBBW) February 9, 2018
FEVA Forever would like to send our deepest condolences to the family of Hip Hop legend Lovebug Starski🙏🏽. You will be missed but never forgotten. #lovebugstarski #hiphoplegend #hiphoproyalty #riplovebugstarski #fevaforever pic.twitter.com/FRyfEkYyF1— FEVA Forever (@feva_forever) February 9, 2018
RIP Lovebug Starski.— Khaled Beydoun (@KhaledBeydoun) February 9, 2018
The MC and legend many believe to have coined the term Hip Hop. pic.twitter.com/cf6RQjIfmT
Rest in Peace to one of the pioneer originators of Hip Hop the BX legend Lovebug Starski.— R.A. the Rugged Man (@RAtheRuggedMan) February 9, 2018
Lovebug Starski will forever remain memorialized in music history for his production/DJ work -AND- for the fact that his name has been shouted out millions of times as people rhyme along w Big. | #RIPLovebugStarski #NYC pic.twitter.com/k6H1ylcMHh— Miss TLC (@IAmMissTLC) February 9, 2018