John “Ecstasy” Fletcher, who co-founded the legendary hip-hop group Whodini and was known for waving a Zorro hat like no other, died.
John’s death was announced Wednesday by Questlove, who remembers Fletcher as a “legendary and a key member of one of hip-hop’s most legendary groups.”
John was living in the Atlanta area and his death came as a big shock to close friends. So far, no cause of death has been announced by the family.
Together with Jalil Hutchins, John formed Whodini in Brooklyn in 1982 before DJ Grandmaster Dee joined in 1986 to form an iconic trio.
Whodini produced several albums and hits, including “Freaks Come Out at Night”, “Friends” and “The Haunted House of Rock”.
The group won the Hip Hop Icon Award at the 3rd annual Black Music Honors in 2018 … and Ice CubeThe “Friday” films often mentioned Whodini songs like ‘Friends’ and ‘Freaks’.
John, who provided Jalil’s vocals, was known for his hat that helped him become one of rap’s first sex symbols.
Whodini, managed by Russell Simmons during the heyday of the 1980s, he was one of the first artists to combine rap with rock, and they were the first to perform live with b-boy dancers. Its sound strongly influenced the release of the New Jack Swing sound.
John’s death is sending shock waves through the music industry, with many artists posting pictures of him and sharing memories.
Cube thanked for “showing us how to do it” and Jermaine Dupri says, “Ex, you know I love you, thanks for every word, every conversation, every good moment.”
Rapper Q-Tip remembered John as “one of the most underrated voices in hip hop” and LL Cool J says he is “one of the most important people in this culture for me.
Chuck Dhe is also paying tribute … recalling the time when John mentored him in the summer of 1987 and was always there to reassure him with advice and tips.
Ecstasy was 56 years old.