London, England – Major Ace, the U.K. grime artist ten credited with being one the genre’s founders, has passed away. His death was confirmed by his younger brother social media. Ace had been suffering from a brain tumor for almost three years.
Major Ace, born Luke Monero, was a founding member the Pay As U Go Cartel. The U.K. collective helped launch the careers a number well-known U.K. artists, including Wiley and DJ Target, among others.
In 2002, the group reached #13 in the UK charts for their single “Champagne Dance.”
Following his passing, Wiley spoke to BBC’s Newsbeat to fer his respects to his close friend.
“Major Ace means a lot to me and he’ll be forever missed,” he said. “He got the credit he deserved. Major Ace was Wiley before Wiley.”
A number notable U.K. artists took to social media to pay their own tributes to Major Ace.