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Rapper Chris “Mac Daddy” Kelly of Kris Kross died Wednesday afternoon after being found unresponsive in his home.

Kelly, 34, was transported to Atlanta Medical Center, where he was pronounced dead, a spokeswoman for the Fulton County Medical Examiner’s Officer told The Atlanta Journal-Constitution. His cause of death was not immediately known but an autopsy is being planned.

Kelly’s death is being investigated as a drug overdose, Fulton County police told The AJC.

Kelly, an Atlanta native, and the other half of the duo Kris Kross with Chris Smith, were 13-year-olds when Jermaine Dupri discovered them at Greenbriar Mall in 1991. Kris Kross was one of the first acts Dupri signed to his So So Def Records label, and in February, the duo was among many to perform at an anniversary show at the Fox.

Kris Kross’ hits included “Warm It Up” and “I Missed the Bus,” but they are most famous for wearing their clothes backwards and their biggest hit, “Jump.”

Chris Kelly’s mother released the following statement:

“It is with deep sadness that we announce that our beloved Chris Kelly has passed away on May 1. To millions of fans worldwide, he was the trendsetting, backwards pants-wearing one-half of Kris Kross who loved making music. But to us, he was just Chris – the kind, generous and fun-loving life of the party. Though he was only with us a short time, we feel blessed to have been able to share some incredible moments with him. His legacy will live on through his music, and we will forever love him.”

Donna Kelly Pratte (mother) & The So So Def Family

Chris Smith (Daddy Mac) the surviving half of Kris Kross, is grieving over the loss of his bandmate. He released the following statement:

Chris Kelly was my Best Friend. He was like a brother. I love him and will miss him dearly. Our friendship began as little boys in first grade. We grew up together. It was a blessing to achieve the success, travel the world and entertain Kris Kross fans all around the world with my best friend,” he continued. “It is what we wanted to do and what brought us happiness. I will always cherish the memories of the C-Connection.


Jermaine Dupri posted the following letter on his blog, Global 14:

So So Def rapper Da Brat, who JD discovered at a Kris Kross show, tweeted this:



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