Kris Kross' Chris Kelly Dies at 34
Published May 01, 2013Chris Kelly, one half of early '90s rap duo Kriss Kross, died this afternoon (May 1) in an Atlanta hospital. While a cause has yet to be determined, a spokeswoman for the Fulton County Medical Examiner's Office told the Atlanta Journal-Constitution Kelly had been taken to the Atlanta Medical Center after being found unresponsive at his home. He was 34 years old.
Kelly, aka the "Mac Daddy," formed Kris Kross with Chris "Daddy Mac" Smith in 1990 when they were both pre-teens. They broke big in 1992 with No. 1 hit "Jump," off their Jermaine Dupri-produced debut LP Totally Krossed Out.
On top of the pop-rap song, the young duo made headlines for their fashion sense, which had them wearing baggy jeans and jerseys backwards. Kris Kross' debut LP also nabbed minor hits "Warm It Up" and "I Missed the Bus."
Kris Kross issued two more LPs — 1993's Da Bomb and 1996's Young, Rich & Dangerous — before disbanding in 1998. The pair had, however, reunited earlier this year at a 20th anniversary party for Dupri's So So Def label.
An autopsy is expected to take place tomorrow to determine the cause of death.
UPDATE: Kelly's mother and the So So Def Family have now issued 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."
Also, as Reuters reports, Kelly may have died of an overdose, with Corporal Kay Lester, spokeswoman for the Fulton County Police Department, saying, "Based on the information at the scene, we are concluding that it was a drug overdose."