Buff Love, the Human Beatbox, was a pioneer in beatboxing (using his mouth to portray the typical hip hop percussion "scratch 'n mix" sounds). Buff Love and another contemporary Doug E. Fresh popularized beatboxing, inspiring other artists to innovate, including Biz Markie and later, others such as Rahzel. Attempting to capitalize on the appearance-oriented name of the Fat Boys, another hip hop group dubbed themselves 'The Skinny Boys', and yet another 'The Fat Girls'. Their popularity was mild in comparison, however.
For their 1987 album, Crushin', the Fat Boys made a cover version of The Surfaris' hit, "Wipe Out", with The Beach Boys singing back-up vocals. The single made it to #12 on the Billboard chart, and #10 on the corresponding R&B listing. The Fat Boys also recorded a version of "The Twist" with the original recording artist, Chubby Checker.
Capitalizing on their good humored personalities, the trio starred in the 1985 Run DMC film Krush Groove and in the Hollywood feature film Disorderlies (1987), which also featured Ralph Bellamy as a millionaire invalid who receives bumbling care by his good-natured orderlies (played by the Fat Boys). They were later approached to record the theme song for A Nightmare on Elm Street 4: The Dream Master (1988), called "Are You Ready for Freddy featuring Robert Englund performing as Freddy Krueger".
The group's popularity waned by the '90s, and Prince Markie Dee left the group to pursue solo interests. In 1991, the remaining two members, Kool Rock Ski and Buff Love carried on as a duo and released Mack Daddy (1991), but shortly thereafter disbanded for good. Regardless, the Fat Boys are fondly regarded as a seminal part of early rap music recording history. Although there was talk of a Fat Boys reunion, nothing materialized. By December 10, 1995, it became an impossibility when Buff Love died of a heart attack in Rosedale, Queens, New York. He was 28 years old and reportedly weighed 450 lbs. Prince Markie Dee is currently managed by Uncle Louie Management and is a radio host for WMIB 103.5 FM 'The Beat' in Miami, Florida on its afternoon drive-time show.
The catalog of recordings by the Fat Boys is currently hard to find. A compilation was produced by Rhino Records in 1997, but it is out of print. Since then, the group's catalog has morphed even further since the release of the compilation: in the late 1990s, BMG Special Products (now Sony/BMG Special Products) purchased the Buddah/Kama Sutra Recordings catalog to which the Fat Boys' first three LPs belong. During the same period, Universal Recordings purchased Polygram Entertainment, owner of the masters of the three albums recorded for Tin Pan Apple/Mercury. Rhino Recordings, a subsidiary of Warner Music, apparently allowed this compilation to go out of print some years ago. Any new compilation will have to license the songs from two distinct recording catalogs - Sony/BMG and Universal - never an easy task. Currently, the first three albums from the group have seen limited re-release on CD in Europe.
|The Fat Boys|
|The Fat Boys Are Back!|
|Big & Beautiful|
|Coming Back Hard Again|
|On and On|
|All Meat, No Filler (Greatest Hits)|