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For Biz Markie's Birthday: YouTube Covers of "Just a Friend"

When it comes to one-hit wonders, Biz Markie certainly ranks up there. His horribly off-key, ubiquitous, feel good song "Just a Friend" propelled the hip hop artist into the pop culture stratosphere and helped us all to understand that singing, literally, isn't everything. Needless to say, it was a bad song that made a lot of people feel good and, as the Beatles put it, that can't be bad.

The use of "Just a Friend" in a Heineken commercial (see above) advocating taking a cab home after a night of drinking helped breathe new life into Markie's career. The cab scene was probably as familiar to the hipster set as the Wayne's World "Bohemian Rhapsody" scene was to many of us who are, shall we say, slightly older.

The hit has spawned its share of covers on the web and one slicked-up, well sung version by R&B crooner Mario that inspired covers of its own - Inception anyone?  In honor of Markie's 47th birthday, we offer up some evidence that Markie isn't the only one who can't sing in these renditions of "Just a Friend."

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Jeff Balke is a writer, editor, photographer, tech expert and native Houstonian. He has written for a wide range of publications and co-authored the official 50th anniversary book for the Houston Rockets.
Contact: Jeff Balke