Prince Be of P.M. Dawn Dead at 46

Mick Hutson/Redferns
Mick Hutson/Redferns

Yet another ’90s rap icon has gone on to the ancestors.

Attrell “Prince Be” Cordes of the rap-pop act P.M. Dawn is dead at 46.

People magazine confirms that Cordes died Friday of renal kidney disease from diabetes. The Jersey City, N.J., native is survived by his wife, Mary, and three children.


Prince Be started P.M. Dawn with his brother, Jarrett “DJ Minutemix” Cordes, in 1988. Their chart-topping hit, “Set Adrift on Memory Bliss,” a melodic singsongy record that sampled Spandau Ballet’s song “True,” hit No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart in 1991. Their follow-up single, “I’d Die Without You," went to No. 3 on the charts and was featured in the 1992 Boomerang soundtrack. #SetAdriftOnMemoryBliss was trending on Twitter Saturday morning.

P.M. Dawn charted their own course in hip-hop and stood out in stark contrast to other performers of the era with their hippie looks (rarely seen without their round “John Lennon” sunglasses) and sensual sounds.

At that time, singing on rap records was anathema, and P.M. Dawn famously got into an altercation with hard-core rapper KRS-One of Boogie Down Productions in 1993.

Rap has certainly expanded since that time, but back then, these pioneers were seen by some as “soft” and “inauthentic.” Today, even the hardest rappers sing on their records.

According to their website, the name P.M. Dawn comes from “the idea that in the darkest hour comes the light.”


Read more at People magazine.