The Death of Disco

The frantic rise and fatal fall of hip-hop producer Disco D

Disco's death reverberated throughout the dance/hip-hop world—during his manic periods, he maintained an impossible number of friends and associates—but it struck the former inhabitants of his loft particularly hard. Benny avoided speaking to reporters, Grocery Man shut down his MySpace page, and Hahn just needed to talk. It's a month after Disco's death, and he's gotten wind that a story is being written. He's located the writer. "I did something very stupid," he blurts out almost immediately. "You know what Dave did? I tried something similar. . . . Dave's death took a toll on me that I can't even put into words."

Hahn isn't alone. "I have lived with the fear of David dying because of this disease for several years now," his mom admits. "I guess there was a part of me who knew that there was potential for him to end up this way. We always kept hope that somehow you can change that."

Disco D photographed in Williamsburg 2005
photo: Tatiana Arocha
Disco D photographed in Williamsburg 2005

To steady herself at his funeral, Amdur clung to childhood pictures of David and his older sister, Becky.

A couple of months later, though, Disco's parents were forced to deal with their son's unfinished business. Chamillionaire was putting the finishing touches on his sophomore album and needed to finalize his song lineup. He loved Disco's contribution, a rock-flavored number called "Rock Star."

"The situation was so hard because of all of the people involved with it," Chamillionaire says. "His estate has to go to a parent [for approval]." His father hired a lawyer; negotiations became contentious. "So it's like a very, very touchy and tricky situation, and it just got too hard for me to deal with. I'm not trying to do nobody wrong, so I will back out of it and be like, 'Look, let's just let Disco D rest in peace.' " He decided to drop Disco's contribution from the album. Even in death, doing business with Disco D seemed a bit too complicated.

« Previous Page