Saturday, November 12, 2011
Joe Frazier and Heavy D
This past week the world tragically lost two great men, boxing legend Joe Frazier and legendary rapper Heavy D. Frazier (aka Smokin' Joe) was best known for his battle with Muhammed Ali in 1971 where he became the first man to beat Ali during the Fight of the Century at Madison Square Garden. Frazier died Monday November 7th at the age of 67 after his final battle with liver cancer. As I was working on this tribute illustration to Frazier I heard the shocking news of Heavy D’s passing at the age of 44. I grew up listening to Heavy D and remember many of his fun hits including “Now That We Found Love” and “Girls They Love Me” where he proclaimed himself as the "overweight lover." I was especially fond of his contribution to Janet Jackson’s song and music video “Alright” because I think this was when he established himself as, not merely a rapper, but a true pop star that was outstanding enough to perform with the best in the business. Throughout his career he also dabbled in acting where he played small roles in the films The Cider House Rules and Life, as well as parts in the television shows Bones and Boston Public. His last film role was a cameo in the recent blockbuster Tower Heist. He was known for his optimistic tweets and ironically one of his last tweets was in tribute to Joe Frazier where he said, “SMOKIN JOE FRAZIER..RIP.. truly one of the best heavyweight champs that ever lived.. GODS SPEED,MR FRAZIER!" In one of his last interviews with TMZ when asked which he liked better, singing or acting he replied “I really love anything artistic, it’s kinda my freedom.” On Tuesday November 8th Heavy D would leave his final tweet, “BE INSPIRED!” I promise I will.
Joe Frazier and Heavy D by Gary Bedard is licensed under a Creative Commons Attribution 3.0 Unported License.