Mark Howard James, professionally known as DJ Mark the 45 King, passed away on October 19, 2023. Among his groundbreaking work for many hip hop stars, Eminem’s “Stan” holds a special place.

DJ Mark got his moniker from his uncanny ability to extract beats from obscure 45 rpm singles. He could bring an unexpected twist to a song that this flavour would elevate to a new level. For example, “Hard Knock Life (Ghetto Anthem)”, he produced for Jay-Z, which featured a looped chorus from the. 1977 original cast album of the Broadway musical “Annie”. Or like a heartbreaking hook on “Stan” lifted from the debut album of British singer Dido (or rather from the 1998 soundtrack of the movie “Sliding Doors”).

DJ Premier was the first to break the news, paying homage to DJ Mark the 45 King’s impact on the culture.

Following this sad news, Marshall took to his social media to share the grief and to say thank you to the man who produced one of Em’s biggest hits:

Legends are never over. #RIP Mark Howard James aka The 45 King … I’m 4ever grateful!!!

Marshall also shared a link to a video where DJ Mark is talking about working on the “Stan” beat for Em.

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