Legendary New York City hip-hop dancer Voodoo Ray has passed away at the age of 50. John Rich, a friend of Ray’s, confirmed that the dancer had died Tuesday via Facebook.
“I’m so sorry to say that class and practice will be canceled tomorrow due to the sudden loss of a great dear friend Rest in Paradise my brother Mr. Voodoo Ray,” Ray wrote. “Life is short love everyone as much as you can because it might be the last moment with them.”
The details of his death have yet to be revealed.
Born Raymond Ultarte, Ray showcased his incredible footwork in music videos for artists such as RUN-DMC, Busta Rhymes, Jay-Z, MC Lyte, Mariah Carey, Wyclef Jean, Backstreet Boys, Doug E. Fresh, Black Moon, and others. Ray was also an integral part of the New York nightlife scene, hosting the famous Funkbox parties alongside DJ Tony Touch.
A number of artists paid their respects including DJ Premier, DJ Mister Cee, and Questlove.
“I literally just got news from Toca that Voodoo Ray has passed… I Told Tony Don’t Shut It Down!!! Let’s Celebrate His Life R.I.P. Ray,” Premier wrote on Twitter.
“He Was The Coolest Dude You Would Ever Know. He Always Had A Smile On His Face. His Love For Music Was Impeccable,” DJ Mister Cee wrote on Instagram. The DJ also recounted the last time he saw Ray, having DJ’d for his 50th birthday party back in April.
I literally just got news from Toca that Voodoo Ray has passed…
I Told Tony Don't Shut It Down!!! Let's Celebrate His Life
R.I.P. Ray… pic.twitter.com/fSXvgKBFMp
— DJ Premier (@REALDJPREMIER) October 18, 2017
Rest In Peace Voodoo Ray. Last night was a tough one.
— Statik Selektah (@StatikSelekt) October 18, 2017