Big Bank Hank of Sugarhill Gang dies at age 57

LAS VEGAS, NEVADA - OCTOBER 1: (L-R) David 'Davey D' Gunthorpe, Michael 'Wonder Mike' Wright, Joey 'Master Gee' Robinson and Henry 'Big Bank Hank' Ja of the Sugar Hill Gang arrive at the Justin Timberlake and Friends Old School Jam, a Special Evening Benefiting Shriners Hospitals for Children at the Theatre For The Performing Arts at Planet Hollywood Resort & Casino on October 1, 2011 in Las Vegas, Nevada. (Frank Micelotta/PictureGroup) via AP IMAGES

TRENTON, N.J. (AP) — Big Bank Hank, one of the members of the pioneering hip-hop group the Sugarhill Gang, has died, according to Aree Booker, a funeral director with Eternity Funeral Services in Englewood, New Jersey. He was 57.

Booker didn’t specify the cause of death, but said the rapper died Tuesday and that his funeral home would handle the services.

Big Bank Hank, whose real name was Henry Jackson, was a part of the Sugarhill Gang in 1979 when the band had hip-hop’s first hit with “Rapper’s Delight.” The song was released as hip-hop music started to emerge as a genre.

The Sugarhill Gang also included Master Gee and Wonder Mike. All of the members are from Englewood, New Jersey.


AP Music Writer Mesfin Fekadu contributed to this report.

Copyright 2014 The Associated Press. All rights reserved. This material may not be published, broadcast, rewritten or redistributed.

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