Sugarhill Gang Rapper Big Bank Hank Dies at 57

The Sugarhill Gang has lost one of its own. Henry “Big Bank Hank” Jackson, one-third of the veteran hip-hop group, died early Tuesday morning at the age of 57.

According to Fox News, Hank died from kidney complications due to cancer. He reportedly passed away in New York City around 2 a.m.

His former groupmates Wonder Mike and Master Gee expressed their condolences. “So sad to hear of our brother’s passing. Rest in peace Big Bank,” they said in a statement.

Hank and Sugarhill Gang helped take rap mainstream with their 1979 hit “Rapper’s Delight,” which became the first rap single to become a Top 40 hit. They released four studio albums including their 1980 self-titled debut.

The hip-hop community took to Twitter to mourn Hank’s loss. “RIP BIG BANK HANK!! A HIP HOP LEGEND,” tweeted Lil Jon, while Funkmaster Flex added, “Rest in peace… Big Bank Hank.”