During a recent interview when we spoke to KJ-52 about his forth coming independent album Jonah, he shared details of his relationship with DJ Official (Fish). KJ-52 said his favorite completed graffiti piece was the memorial mural he crafted in Official's hometown.
"Way back when I started, literally almost 20 years ago, I had met this guy named Cipha Sounds," KJ said about the origin of their unique relationship. "My faith never really did come up in conversation, but he told me that his best friend had just kind of gave everything up and now would really only do Christian rap. I made a mental note of that, wondering who that guy was. Little did I know, it was Official."
The two artists quickly formed as deep friendship, KJ says. "Once I started hanging out with him, it was weird. We were both kind of odd guys, like we both lived in different worlds. His was more hip-hop centric, mine was more CCM. But, we were just both rap nerds. I'd find myself at like industry events and I'd just want to go off and hang out with 'Fish,' and he would leave his crew and hang out with me. He was like the plug in a lot of ways. He connected me to a lot of people that mind of kind of brushed me off otherwise... certain events, we would just spend days upon days together. He was the main reason I did the Guinness Book of World Records attempt, because it was to raise money for him initially." That attempt would result in KJ-52 and several other emcees setting the world record for longest freestyle rap.
"I'm not going to sit here and be like we talked every day, we shared our most deepest and secret thoughts. It wasn't like that," KJ summarized. "It was like one of those friends that you knew from high school that you didn't have to talk to for five years and as soon as you did it was like he had never left."
Nelson "DJ Official" Chu passed away just short of his 40th birthday after undergoing a double lung transplant surgery. In 2010, he was diagnosed with a rare form of bone marrow cancer while struggling with ongoing emphysema complications. In 2014, he retired from the industry due to health complications. At the time he had been serving as Lecrae's tour deejay. He was revered as a CHH icon, beginning with hip-hop pioneers The Cross Movement. DJ Official always remained positive throughout his ordeal, and has been widely quoted as saying, "I wouldn't trade what happened to my life for nothing. It made me... me. God has done some amazing things through it. I trust God more than ever." He will be remembered for years to come as someone who transformed the industry while fine tuning some of the biggest CHH heavyweights, like KJ-52, along the way.