James "Ice-Ice" Parker, a hip hop pioneer and member of Cosmic Force and the Zulu Nation, has died, according to statements from his friends. The cause of death is unknown.
Born in the Bronx, Ice-Ice rose to fame as a founding member of the early hip hop group Cosmic Force, which was an offshoot of Afrika Bambaataa's Universal Zulu Nation. The group was perhaps best known for its classic song "Zulu Nation Throwdown" featuring Bambaataa.
In a statement, Parker's friend DJ Red Alert commemorated his fallen comrade.
"I am saddened to learn we lost a good person, James "Ice-Ice" Parker," he wrote in a Facebook post. "My condolences go out to the Parker family. To the Universal Zulu Nation, we lost a soldier... Rest in power, my brother. Everyone knows you was a good dude to all."
Ice-Ice is the second hip hop pioneer to pass this week. The rap community mourned the loss of West coast hip hop vet KMG of '90s group Above the Law, who died of an apparent heart attack over the weekend.
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(Photo: Courtesy hiphopdx.com)