A day after Brooklyn rapper Sean Price died at age 43, graffiti artist and former 5 Pointz curator Meres One created a mural of Price on a street corner in Crown Heights. Meres said, "All of his label would come to 5 Pointz...I had this wall for a year and I wanted to do a portrait, I just didn't know who. It just was a perfect fit, one of the illest out of Brooklyn."
Price 43, apparently died in his sleep. A spokesperson said, "It is with beyond a heavy heart that Duck Down Music is sadly confirming that Sean Price passed away early this morning in his Brooklyn apartment, Saturday, August 8th, 2015. The cause of death is currently unknown, but it was reported that he died in his sleep. He’s survived by his wife, and his three children. Sean's family and friends are asking for time to grieve and process the news. Further details will be issued when more information is available."
Price was a member of the groups Heltah Skeltah, Boot Camp Clik and Random Axe. Rolling Stone's obituary covered his career:
Price first rose to prominence under the moniker Ruck as a member of Heltah Skeltah alongside fellow Brownsville, Brooklyn rapper Rock. The pair were members of a hip-hop collective known as the Boot Camp Clik, which also featured Black Moon's Buckshot, Smif-N-Wessun's Tek and Steele and the trio O.G.C. After first appearing on Smif-N-Wessun's revered 1995 LP Dah Shinin', Heltah Skeltah released their own 1996 debut Nocturnal. That was followed the next year by the first Boot Camp Clik LP For the People.
While Ruck continued to release music with both Heltah Skeltah and Boot Camp Clik throughout the past two decades, the rapper rebranded himself under his birth name when he delved into his solo career. As Sean Price, he released three studio albums, 2005's Monkey Barz, 2007's Jesus Price Supastar and 2012's Mic Tyson. Price also teamed with Guilty Simpson and producer Black Milk for their acclaimed 2011 LP Random Axe.
The mural, at the corner of Bergen Street and Kingston Avenue, is about 20 feet by 15 feet. Meres started the mural at 10:30 a.m. and referred to an image of Price on his laptop, which was in his car, parked nearby.
"When I ran 5 Pointz, it was amazing to meet all of the pioneers that I grew up admiring and listening, and the fact that they came to something that I created--I can't think of anything better. So to me, this is like payback, especially to him," Meres said. He added, "I'm not going to change it. He has a permanent home here."
Brownsville resident Billy Clippins who knew Price told us, "We're from the same hood...he was a good dude... God is calling all his great people home. Good people."
Reporting by Scott Heins