NEW YORK — DJ Kay Slay, a prominent disc jockey, radio host and music executive from New York, died Sunday following a four-month fight with COVID-19, his family and the Hot 97 station confirmed Monday.

Obit DJ Kay Slay

DJ Kay Slay in New York in 2001. Darla Khazei/Associated Press, file

The artist, whose real name was Keith Grayson, was 55.

“Our hearts are broken by the passing of Keith Grayson, professionally known as DJ Kay Slay,” his family said in a statement. “A dominant figure in Hip Hop culture with millions of fans worldwide, DJ Kay Slay will be remembered for his passion and excellence with a legacy that will transcend generations.

“In memory of DJ Kay Slay, our family wishes to thank all of his friends, fans, and supporters for their prayers and well wishes during this difficult time. We ask that you respect our privacy as we grieve this tragic loss.”

Grayson, who grew up in Harlem, rose to fame as a graffiti artist during the 1980s before transitioning to a music career in which he came out with six albums and dozens of mixtapes. He released his first album, “The Streetsweeper, Vol. 1,” in 2003.

Grayson also hosted the show “Drama Hour” on Hot 97 radio station in New York, which aired on Fridays from 1-2 a.m.

As an executive, Grayson led the artists and repertoire division for Shaquille O’Neal’s DEJA34 label, did similar work for Ray J’s “All I Feel” album, and signed the New York-born rapper Papoose, according to his biography on the Hot 97 website.

“Hot 97 is shocked and saddened by the loss of our beloved DJ Kay Slay,” the hip-hop music station said in a statement. “We cherish the many memories created through the twenty-plus years he dedicated to the ‘Drama Hour.’

“A cultural icon, Kay Slay was more than just a DJ, to us he was family and a vital part of what made Hot 97 the successful station it is today. Our hearts go out to his family, friends, and fans worldwide and we will always and forever celebrate The Drama King’s legacy.”

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