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Boss Appears At A Party

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Groundbreaking rapper Boss, born Lichelle Marie Laws, and one the first female MC’s signed to Def Jam, has passed away. She was 54.

Bun B broke the news of her death when the Texas rapper shared his condolences on his Instagram.

“Rest in peace to my big sis Lichelle Laws AKA Boss. One of the best female MCs and a dear friend,” wrote B in the caption of a photo of Boss flipping up a pair birds. “Give Rick Royal a hug for me. Long Live The Org!”

Boss, stylized Bo$$, was the very first female rap act signed to Def Jam, with her debut album, Born Gangstaz, released in 1993. The lead single—the Def Jef produced “Deeper”—was a no. 1 hit on the rap charts. Her gruff style and hardcore delivery, along with beats provided by Erick Sermon, T-Ray, MC Serch and the late Jam Master Jay, amongst others, quickly made her a fan favorite, but a proper follow-up album never materialized.

Although tabbed as a West Coast rapper, she was actually born in Detroit. Moving to Los Angeles after high school, she was discovered by DJ Quik, who put her on a track with AMG. Word is it got the attention of Def Jam co-founder Russell Simmons, who inked her to the label’s fledgling Def Jam West imprint—but those in the know say Tracy Waples (an executive producer on the album) is who actually pushed for her signing.

In the mid-1990s she reportedly settled in Houston, where she remained ever since. Unfortunately, in 2011 she experience kidney failure and suffered a stroke in 2017. At this time there are no specifics about her cause of death.

As information got out about her untimely passing the Hip-Hop community—fans, friends and peers—started saluting her on social media. Peep some of the overdue flowers given in the gallery.

Rapper Boss Dead At 54, Hip-Hop X Salutes The Legend  was originally published on