11 November 1974
Louisville, Jefferson County, Kentucky, United States
25 February 2008 (aged 33)
Stephen Ellis Garrett was born and raised in Louisville in a family of musicians. Growing up, he sang in the choir at his church, where his sister played piano, his mother was the musical director, and his father was the pastor. As a member of Playa, Static began his musical career under the tutelage of Jodeci's DeVante Swing, and formed kinships with fellow members of DeVante's Swing Mob such as Missy Elliott, Timbaland, and Ginuwine. After the Swing Mob members parted company with DeVante, Static and the rest of Playa worked extensively as songwriters, co-producers, and background singers for their colleagues. Static was one of Ginuwine's main songwriters, penning the lyrics to Timbaland-produced Ginuwine hits such as "Pony", "What's So Different", and "So Anxious".
Static also wrote much of Playa's material when the group signed with Def Jam Records in the mid-1990s, including Playa's 1998 hit single "Cheers 2 U" from the album of the same name. Also in 1998, Static wrote the lyrics for Aaliyah's hit single "Are You That Somebody". Following the success of "Are You That Somebody", Static became Aaliyah's main lyricist, and wrote many singles and album tracks for the singer. Static's writing credits for Aaliyah include "Come Back in One Piece", "We Need a Resolution", "Rock the Boat", "More Than a Woman", and the number-one single "Try Again" from the 2000 film Romeo Must Die. During this period, Static also wrote for Nicole Wray ("Eyes Better Not Wander") and Destiny's Child ("Say My Name (Timbaland's Remix)") as well.
After Aaliyah's death in 2001, Static went on to write for other artists; his later co-writing credits include Truth Hurts' "Addictive" and Brandy's "Come as You Are". Aside from his longtime association with Timbaland, Static also collaborated with producers Scott Storch, Dr. Dre, and Jazze Pha. In the mid-2000s, Static worked with R&B group Pretty Ricky, R&B singer Tank, and appeared on David Banner's 2004 single "Crank It Up".
Static later signed to Blackground Records, label home of Aaliyah and Tank, as a solo artist. Tragically, he died on February 25, 2008 in his hometown of Louisville, Kentucky. The cause of death was due to complications from a botched medical procedure performed at Baptist East Hospital in Louisville. It was originally suspected to be due to a brain aneurism, but it was just a rumor.
He was last featured on Lil Wayne's song "Lollipop" and video which was shot in Las Vegas, the first single off Tha Carter III.
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