Mr. Magic, an influential NYC DJ who has been namechecked on tracks by Nas, Biggie and Tupac, has died of a heart attack.
Alongside Marley Marl, Mr. Magic began hosting the first all hip-hop radio show (“Rap Attack”) in New York in 1983. For the next six years, Mr. Magic was a instrumental in bringing hip-hop to listeners, feuding with fellow area radio host DJ Red Alert. He also made an appearance as himself in Grand Theft Auto: Vice City.
Hot 97’s resident gossipmonger Miss Info posted a letter this morning from DJ Premier confirming Mr. Magic’s death and eulogizing him:
I WANT TO SEND OUT THE UTMOST RESPECT AND CONDOLENCES TO THE MEMORY OF JOHN RIVAS—-aka MR. MAGIC
HE PASSED AWAY THIS MORNING OF A HEART ATTACK…..
TRUE HIP HOP HEADS KNOW THAT HIS HISTORY IS SO LONG
DUE TO HIM BEING THE FIRST RAP MIXSHOW TO EVER BE ON COMMERCIAL RADIO ON NEW YORK’S WBLS–(107.5) WITH MARLEY MARL AND FLY TY IN 1982-1984…….THEN WENT ON TO WHBI IN OCTOBER OF 1984 AND THEN
BACK TO WBLS in 1985 and WDAS in Philly SIMULTANEOUSLY
HE PAVED THE WAY FOR ALL RADIO STATIONS THAT EVER DID MIXSHOWS AND ALSO SPARKED THE CAREER OF BOOGIE DOWN PRODUCTIONS DUE TO THE DISS HE SHOWED WHEN THEY CAME TO SHOP THEIR DEMO TO HIM AND WAS TURNED AWAY WHICH THEN SPARKED “SOUTH BRONX” AND “THE BRIDGE IS OVER”…….
HE WAS KNOWN FOR HIS DIRECT AND SARCASTIC ATTITUDE ON THE AIR AND EVERY ARTIST WANTED HIS APPROVAL WHEN IT CAME TO BREAKING NEW RECORDS……..HE EVEN HAD SONGS DEDICATED TO HIM BY THE LEGENDARY WHODINI–(”MR. MAGIC’S WAND”) WHICH WAS SURPRISINGLY PRODUCED BY ONE OF MY FAVORITE ARTISTS THOMAS DOLBY…….
SHOUTS OUT TO MARLEY MARL AND FLY TY FOR THE CORRECT INFORMATION ON THIS……
REST IN PEACE MR. MAGIC………….DJ PREMIER