Biz Markie’s pop crossover “Just A Friend” arrived in 1989 at a time when rap music was still open to all types of goofiness and fun. Biz Markie doesn’t only rap but sings on this song too.
Based on the 1968 R&B hit “(You) Got What I Need,” Biz Markie’s “Just A Friend” is a hip hop one-hit-wonder that brought Marcel Hall’s music to the world. Biz Markie used the piano and phrasing but changed the subject of Freddie Scott’s hit.
Biz Markie’s hit went on to become a song that would feature throughout the years in popular culture. It hit the hot digital songs charts in 2009 thanks to a Heineken ad, and can also be seen The Wackness, The Sitter and The Book of Life.
It’s also in It’s Always Sunny in Philadelphia and Unbreakable Kimmy Schmidt. Biz Markie’s rap will forever be remembered despite most of his samples not being cleared in any way.