Remembering Kris Kross – A Life Cut Short

Kris Kross, the hip-hop duo of Chris “Mack Daddy” Kelly and Chris “Daddy Mac” Smith, made a huge impact on the rap world in the early 90s. The two teenage friends, who were discovered by Jermaine Dupri, achieved huge success with their debut album “Totally Krossed Out”, going onto sell over four million copies and spawning four hit singles. However, their fame was short-lived and both members struggled to find success in the industry afterwards. On May 1st, 2013, tragedy struck when Chris Kelly was found dead in his home at the age of 34. The world of hip-hop mourned the loss of one of its biggest stars and, more than seven years later, fans are still remembering Kris Kross and the life that was taken too soon.

The Early Life of Chris Kelly

Chris Kelly was born on August 11th, 1978 in Atlanta, Georgia, to Mark and Donna Kelly. His father was a successful business man, who owned multiple businesses in the area. Chris was the younger of two sons and was raised in a middle-class family. As a child, Chris was an avid reader and enjoyed sports, playing on his school’s basketball team. His love for music was evident from an early age and he was already writing rap lyrics and performing with friends by the time he reached high school.

It was in high school that Chris met Chris Smith, and the two became close friends. The pair soon started performing together at local clubs and events, and in 1991 they were discovered by Jermaine Dupri at a local mall. Dupri signed them to his record label and they began working on their debut album “Totally Krossed Out”.

The Rise of Kris Kross

Kris Kross released their debut single “Jump” in 1992, and it quickly became a hit, reaching number one on the Billboard Hot 100. The success of the single was followed by the success of their debut album “Totally Krossed Out”, which went on to sell over four million copies worldwide. The duo went on to release two more successful albums, “Da Bomb” and “Young, Rich & Dangerous”, before disbanding in 1996.

The duo’s success was not just limited to music, as they also appeared in films and television shows, including House Party 3 and the TV show A Different World. They also collaborated with big names in the industry such as Michael Jackson and LL Cool J. During their time as a group, Kris Kross achieved huge success and made their mark on the rap world forever.

The Struggles After Kris Kross

After Kris Kross disbanded, both members struggled to find success in the music industry. Chris Kelly tried to become a producer, but his efforts were unsuccessful. He also had a short-lived solo career which failed to take off. Chris Smith, on the other hand, had some success as a solo artist, releasing two albums, “Totally Krossed Out Too” in 1998 and “Krossroads” in 2002. Neither album achieved commercial success, however, and both members eventually faded from the public eye.

The Tragic Death of Chris Kelly

On May 1st, 2013 Chris Kelly was found dead in his home. The cause of death was ruled to be a drug overdose of a combination of cocaine and heroin. The news of his death sent shockwaves through the hip-hop community, as fans and friends alike mourned the loss of one of rap’s biggest stars. His funeral was held on May 11th, 2013, and was attended by hundreds of people, including Dupri, Jackson, and Smith.

Legacy of Kris Kross

Chris Kelly and Chris Smith left behind a legacy that will never be forgotten. Their music and influence still resonates with fans today, and their legacy will continue to live on in the hearts of those who loved them. Kris Kross was, and still is, an inspiration to all hip-hop fans, and their music will live on in our hearts forever.


Chris Kelly and Chris Smith were two of the most influential figures in the rap world, and their sudden death in 2013 shocked the hip-hop community. Although their lives were cut short, their music and influence will live on forever. Fans all over the world will continue to remember Kris Kross and the life that was taken too soon.