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Rap icon Biz Markie's spokesperson gives health update after rumors of his death

The "Just a Friend" rapper is receiving medical care for an undisclosed condition.
Legends Of Hip-Hop Concert 2011
Rapper and deejay Biz Markie performed at the Arie Crown Theater in Chicago on March 19, 2011.Raymond Boyd / Getty Images
/ Source: TODAY

Biz Markie's spokesperson is setting the record straight after rumors circulated online that the New York City rap icon had died.

"The news of Biz Markie’s passing is not true. Biz is still under medical care, surrounded by professionals who are working hard to provide the best healthcare possible," Markie's manager, Jenni D. Izumi, told NBC News in a statement.

No further details were available on Markie's condition or what prompted him to seek medical care.

"Biz’s wife and family are touched by the outpouring of love and admiration from his friends, peers and fans alike. At this time, we ask for your continued thoughts and prayers during this difficult time," Izumi added.

The beloved rapper was reportedly hospitalized last year for complications related to Type 2 diabetes, his representative told TMZ at the time. That news prompted Markie's friends and admirers in the music industry to send prayers and support on social media.

"I met @officialbizmarkie when i was a teenager he was the first super star to tell me he believed in me and I’ll make it. This is so inspirational to me knowing someone who made it to tell me I’ll make it,” Fat Joe wrote on Instagram.

Markie, 57, was born Marcel Theo Hall, in New York City's Harlem neighborhood. While he's best known for his hit "Just a Friend," Markie has also had crossover success, appearing on television shows and Men in Black II.