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Twenty-three years ago, when my life-long friend, Andre Harrell, who at the time was running Uptown Records and I was running Def Jam, brought in “Mr Big Stuff” aka Heavy D, for me to listen to, I was too narrow-minded to hear it.  

Good thing I didn’t because it was bigger than just another song. Heavy D’s song became a cornerstone for a whole music revolution, what we called that “new jack swing.”  He was the rock on which the entire Uptown Records church was built on.

Heavy D made R&B rap acceptable.  Before him no one considered that kind of music “hip hop.” Once he came along it became “the hip hop.”  I am still very sad over the loss of a my very dear friend.  

Rest in peace Heavy, you were the only rapper everybody always loved.  You never rapped a mean word about anybody…you only spread love.  You were truly the overweight lover. You will be greatly, greatly missed.

Russell Simmons