DJ Premier Blog » Guru Passed Away After Hard Battle With Cancer, R.I.P.

Guru Passed Away After Hard Battle With Cancer, R.I.P.

Guru has passed away yesterday morning (April 19) after a long battle with cancer.

According to Solar, Guru suffered from the malicious illness for over a year and after numerous special treatments under the supervision of medical specialists failed, the legendary MC succumbed to the disease. Guru always tried to keep this harrowing diagnosis in private but in early 2010 he had to admit himself to hospital due to serious effects caused by the disease.

Since the onset of illness, Guru tried to live a “normal” life as an influential and outstanding musician, loving father, family man, and best friend. Doctors encouraged Guru to think positive that the cancer can be arrested and that a full recovery is possible but several special treatments including hard hitting chemotherapies failed.

While in hospital with terminal cancer, Guru wrote a letter, which was provided by Solar, to his fans addressing his illness, his shining music career, his family and loved ones.

“I, Guru, am writing this letter to my fans, friends and loved ones around the world. I have had a long battle with cancer and have succumbed to the disease. I have suffered with this illness for over a year. I have exhausted all medical options. I have a non-profit organization called Each One Counts dedicated to carrying on my charitable work on behalf of abused and disadvantaged children from around the world and also to educate and research a cure for this terrible disease that took my life. I write this with tears in my eyes, not of sorrow but of joy for what a wonderful life I have enjoyed and how many great people I have had the pleasure of meeting,” read the official Guru statement.

“My loyal best friend, partner and brother, Solar, has been at my side through it all and has been made my health proxy by myself on all matters relating to myself. He has been with me by my side on my many hospital stays, operations, doctors visits and stayed with me at my home and cared for me when I could not care for myself. Solar and his family is my family and I love them dearly and I expect my family, friends, and fans to respect that, regardless to anybody’s feelings on the matter. It is my wish that counts. This being said I am survived by the love of my life, my sun KC, who I trust will be looked after by Solar and his family as their own. Any awards or tributes should be accepted, organized approved by Solar on behalf myself and my son until he is of age to except on his own.”

The statement reads on, “I do not wish my ex-DJ to have anything to do with my name likeness, events tributes etc. connected in anyway to my situation including any use of my name or circumstance for any reason and I have instructed my lawyers to enforce this. I had nothing to do with him in life for over 7 years and want nothing to do with him in death. Solar has my life story and is well informed on my family situation, as well as the real reason for separating from my ex-DJ. As the sole founder of GangStarr, I am very proud of what GangStarr has meant to the music world and fans. I equally am proud of my Jazzmatazz series and as the father of Hip-Hop/Jazz. I am most proud of my leadership and pioneering efforts on Jazzmatazz 4 for reinvigorating the Hip-Hop/Jazz genre in a time when music quality has reached an all time low. Solar and I have toured in places that I have never been before with GangStarr or Jazzmatatazz and we gained a reputation for being the best on the planet at Hip-Hop/Jazz, as well as the biggest and most influential Hip-Hop/Jazz record with Jazzmatazz 4 of the decade to now. The work I have done with Solar represents a legacy far beyond its time. And we as a team were not afraid to push the envelope. To me this is what true artists do! As men of honor we stood tall in the face of small mindedness, greed, and ignorance. As we fought for music and integrity at the cost of not earning millions and for this I will always be happy and proud, and would like to thank the million fans who have seen us perform over the years from all over the world. The work I have done with Solar represents a legacy far beyond its time and is my most creative and experimental to date. I hope that our music will receive the attention it deserves as it is some of the best work I have done and represents some of the best years of my life.”

Guru, born Keith Elam, rose to fame in the 80’s as the founder of the legendary rap group GangStarr. The group released the classic single Words I Manifest followed by their critically acclaimed debut album No More Mr. Nice Guy (1989) and the classic album Step In The Arena (1991). Guru was the first artist to truly blend Hip-Hop with Live Jazz beginning in 1993, and seeing the vast influences his Jazzmatazz concept has had on the industry, it is clear that Guru’s musical contributions have been way ahead of their time. Guru has worked with such great artists as Herbie Hancock, Isaac Hayes, Donald Byrd, Ramsey Lewis, Roy Ayers, Chaka Kahn, Branford Marsalis, David Sanborn, Bob James, Erykah Badu, The Roots, Common, Angie Stone, Jamiroquai, Macy Gray and Damien Marley, to name a few. Despite the fact that Guru isn’t hailing from New York, he is noted as a pioneer of the New York sound and true lyrical Hip-Hop. Guru later on joined forces with hit producer Solar and formed his label 7 Grand Records with the goal to keep “real” Hip-Hop alive.

Guru’s longtime partner, Solar, issues an official statement about the lost of the legendary MC which you can read below:

“The world has lost one of the best MCs and Hip-Hop icons of all time — my loyal best friend, partner, and brother, Guru! Guru has been battling cancer for well over a year and has lost his battle! This is a matter that Guru wanted private until he could beat it but tragically this did not happen. The cancer took him. Now the world has lost a great man and a true genius. For the fans that reached out with love and support, I can’t tell you how much that meant to Guru and myself. Guru prepared this letter [read above] while he was in the hospital for the fans. I hope now that Guru has moved on to a better place! Guru is a great Black American Hero and should always be remembered as such and he is much more that just a Hip-Hop icon — he has changed the world for the better. I salute my fallen brother Guru! He will be missed tremendously!” Solar stated.

We will sorely miss Guru, both from a personal and from a professional standpoint. Our warmest condolences to Guru’s family and loved ones at this difficult time.

This letter is way outta hand. Pure scandalous. C’mon, this isn’t Guru who wrote this letter. Still questioning if he really got outta coma in the first place? Why the fuck did nobody stopped that dude??? I’m stuck with mix feelings, sorry. Hard to accept, R.I.P. to the man who marked 90s hip hop. R.I.P. Guru, what’s going to happen? He will be remembered for ever and ever!! DJ Premier, hold your head up for real. My condolences to his family and friends. Out of respect and mourning I’ll stop posting until this saturday (unless DJ Premier talks).


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441 Responses to “Guru Passed Away After Hard Battle With Cancer, R.I.P.”


  • Comment from Ave-D

    R.I.P Guru, Peace to the God!!! One Love!!!

  • Comment from Purchase R&B

    I must agree, what the author is saying is true, I aslo came up with the same conclustion but im shure theres others who think otherwise.

  • Comment from DJ King

    Guru was one of the best.
    I spent so much hours with his music in my life.
    So i made an Guru Tribute Mix to honour him.

    Free Download @

    http://soundcloud.com/deine-mutter-records/dj-king-guru-tribute-mix

    Shout Outs 2 Premo the best producer alive!!!!!!!!!!!!!!!

  • Comment from joel b

    Solar SMOKE A COCK. ur beats are wack, ur a psycho. PREMIER ALL DAY EVERY DAY.

    some1 put a hit out on that cock smoker

  • Comment from Stoof

    RIP Guru! 43, wtf that’s sad…

  • Comment from Jess Lee Brooker

    Keith Elam. Guru. I don’t know how this has been allowed to happen. No thing or person or time can change or deduct from the force that you, and Premo with Gang Starr created. And your word, truth,love and godly powers released by you and sent out on the waves of sound you know last forever. The cosmos is always and eternally hearing the music, the word and the meaning of it all, and all it has done can never be broken. Your soul and presence are too strong, there is no death, I know you know that. If its true God walked with us throughout history, a God incarnate on this earth at this time, you were, at the very least a huge aspect of him. You are. Love and Blessings to your family, forever being sent. And in our hearts and life, thoughts of you remain ever strong. What you achieved in your life will hold them safe and minds alike with faith. A meeting of the minds, holding all you helped create in existence, eternally. Thank you. Always you’ll remain in our hearts I know, a tragic loss for your family and fans but just the beginning of a new for you. And I’m sure all that love you will meet with you again in time. I guess you just got there before us, maybe the lords of karma thought you’d done enough here,or at least all you could do on this plane. Universal on all I know brother, maybe you’re needed for bigger things. Until then, bye for now. Thank you for the inspiration you have been and for all the times the music and your words have healed and helped me and many keep the faith. Peace.

  • Comment from Tony Agresta

    Open dialog is paramount when dealing with all forms of illness.I am hoping to see more money going into research and governments doing their part. All my respect goes to those suffering, be it you personally or a loved one. My hope is for a major breakthrough in the near future to help all those in need.

  • Comment from miced

    DESCANSA EN PAZ GURU

  • That’s well known that cash makes us autonomous. But how to act if someone does not have money? The one way is to receive the http://lowest-rate-loans.com or just consolidation loan.

  • Comment from Fox

    Rest in peace GURU. We pour a little liquor in Berlin!

  • Comment from Kuzin

    As the do the many that have visited this before me, I understand the impact GURU has had on hip-hop and its fans alike. I myself had the honor of meeting Premier and Guru and their release party for their album THE OWNERZ. At this release party, while chillin and coversing with the 2 they both blessed me with Autographs ON the album…I know there are die hard GANGSTARR fans out there that would love to have that, so I figured I can do something to help 2 good causes. I am willing to SELL this autographed copy of the album and use the money to help diabetic children like my son as I am looking to do with the start of my own foundation. Feel free to contact me for more info on both.

  • Comment from havuz

    Rest in peace GURU. We pour a little liquor in Berlin!

  • If it wasn’t for GURU, a lot of Hip-Hop and Rap artists would be nowhere to be found…

    R.I.P, Guru!

    Sincerely,

    Thomas Anderson

  • Comment from Computer News

    Latest news can we enjoy a variety of ways, one of which is to read news sites, including your site.

  • Comment from nandoo pari

    Rest in peace GURU,
    May God bless your soul,
    You will be in our hearts forever

  • Comment from ACID

    ITS A SAD DAY WHEN ONE OF HIP HOP MOST RESPECTED MC DIES….ONE LOVE…I SEEN THEN WHEN THEY PLAYED IN DUBLIN IRELAND IN 03 HAVE A SIGNED OWNERS POSTER THAT GURU AND PRIMO TAGED.ITS HARD TO BELEVE HES GONE…..ONE LOVE TO PRIMO

  • Comment from Hannah

    I was in a club last night and I heard his music, and I remembered how much he struggled with the disease. May God rest him in peace!

  • My condolences and best wishes, Guru.

  • Generally I do not post on blogs, – but I would like to say that this post really forced me to do so! really nice post.

  • I wanted to thank you for this great read!! I just wanted to throw you a big thanks – you and I’ll bookmark it and come back later

  • Comment from Funny Shirts

    RIP Guru… we miss you

  • Comment from hair extensions

    Such a shame when good people are taken from their family and freinds at an early age ,rest in peace guru

  • Comment from nakliyat

    My condolences and best wishes, Guru.

  • Very often I go to see this internet site. It very greatly is pleasant to me.

    Thanks the author

  • Comment from Colin Hall

    Reading Guru’s official statement brings a tear to my eye. God bless you on your journey Guru and send my regrets to all that you have left behind.

  • Comment from siler

    repose en paix guru( from france)

  • Comment from ASA Sojourner-Love

    Wow!
    He was REALLY UNIQUE.
    I’m genuinely sorry to hear of his passing.
    Thanks, GURU, for you and your memorable creativity!
    LOVE & LIGHT!!

  • Comment from Graham

    The world has lost one of the best MCs and Hip-Hop icons of all-time..Although this was a matter that Guru wanted private until he could beat it,tragically, this did not happen. The cancer took him, and the world has lost another great man and a true genius..RIP!

  • Comment from Eye care

    Rest in peace, you have left us your creativity , we will always remember you.

  • Comment from DJ Nose

    Gangstarr changed the game. I still remember when my man turned me on to Guru and Primo when he put that Gangstarr CASETTE TAPE in the box and said “check this out”. Guru’s flesh is gone but his lyrics live forever!
    R.I.P.

  • Comment from status

    Guru the best. We remember him for his work

  • Comment from asics shoes

    The world has lost one of the best MCs and Hip-Hop icons of all-time..Although this was a matter that Guru wanted private until he could beat it,tragically, this did not happen.

  • R.I.P Guru. Still sad.

  • Comment from Watch NHL

    Such a shame when good people are taken from their family and freinds at an early age ,rest in peace guru.

  • Comment from thomasjewellery

    The content of your essay is excellent, and it’s very expressed.

  • Comment from Free Webcams

    Very sad news. This is a terrible loss.

  • Comment from Craig

    !ONE LOVE TO GURU …I MISS U BRUVA

  • Comment from Mike Rulmeys

    I still remember when my man turned me on to Guru and Primo when he put that Gangstarr CASETTE TAPE in the box and said “check this out”. Guru’s flesh is gone but his lyrics live forever! http://www.prowordpress.net/

  • Rest in peace, you have left us your creativity , we will always remember you.

  • Comment from Electric Bicycles

    The world has lost one of the best MCs and Hip-Hop icons of all-time..Although this was a matter that Guru wanted private until he could beat it,tragically, this did not happen.

  • Comment from Swimming Pool

    Guru was only 43? he had accomplished so much that I assumed he was older. Well not much more to say really, rip man. Your music will live on..


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