Pioneering Rap Producer Larry Smith Has Died

Gene Bagnato from the Adler Archives/Cornell University
Larry and Run-DMC in 1985.

Sad news in the world of hip-hip -- one of rap music's pioneering producers, Larry Smith, has passed away at the age of 63.

Smith co-produced Run-D.M.C.'s incalculably influential first two albums (Run-D.M.C. and King of Rock) alongside Russell Simmons. Additionally, he produced two albums from seminal hip-hop crew Whodini, including their signature song "Freaks Come Out at Night."

How Run-D.M.C. Changed the Rap Game Forever

Smith also worked with Kurtis Blow, playing bass on several of Blow's tracks and co-writing his all-time classic "The Breaks."

Rev. Run paid tribute to Smith on Twitter, hailing him as hip-hop's greatest producer ever.