‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ Rapper Coolio Passed Away At The Age Of 59
The Grammy-winning rapper, who was one of the most well-known figures in hip-hop in the 1990s, was partially correct. With over 1 billion streams on both YouTube and Spotify earlier this year, “Gangsta’s Paradise” continues to be one of the most-heard songs. Since the album’s release, Coolio has been on the road; on Saturday, at the age of 59, he was due to perform in Stuttgart, Germany. However, his manager confirmed that the singer abruptly passed away on Wednesday afternoon at a friend’s Los Angeles home.
The cause of death is still a mystery. Around 4 p.m., paramedics were called to the residence, according to TMZ, which broke the news. following Coolio’s breakdown in the restroom. According to the outlet, he was declared dead at the scene after what appeared to be a heart attack.
According to Coolio’s manager, Sheila Finegan, his staff and loved ones are in mourning following his unexpected demise.
In a statement, Finegan said, “He impacted the world with the gift of his ability and will be sadly missed.”
Known professionally as Coolio, Artis Leon Ivey Jr. (August 1, 1963 – September 28, 2022) were an American rapper, actor, and record producer. With the releases of his albums It Takes a Thief (1994), Gangsta’s Paradise (1995), and My Soul (1996), Coolio became a well-known artist in the middle the to late 1990s (1997). His most famous song, “Gangsta’s Paradise,” which won a Grammy Award in 1995, as well as the singles “Fantastic Voyage” (1994), “1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin’ New)” (1996), and “C U When U Get There,” are what made him most well-known (1997).
He wrote the “Aw, Here It Goes!” theme song for the Nickelodeon television program Kenan & Kel, which debuted in 1996. Coolio started independently releasing records in 1996. In addition, he published a cookbook and started a web series called Cookin’ with Coolio. Ivey first became known when he was in the gangsta rap group WC and the Maad Circle with WC and his brother Crazy Toones.
His big break came in 1994 with “Fantastic Voyage,” an escapist tune that appeared on his debut album, “It Takes a Thief,” and whose music video, which featured a magician who transformed his bicycle into a convertible, caused a stir on MTV.
But “Gangsta’s Paradise,” a No. 1 record that was included in the 1995 film “Dangerous Minds,” starring Michelle Pfeiffer, was the tune that solidified him among hip-elite hip-hop’s ranks.
According to Coolio, “Gangsta’s Paradise” almost didn’t exist. It employed religious themes to highlight the difficulties of street life and gun violence.
“Stevie [Wonder] was like, ‘No, no way,’ when he first heard it. I’m not going to allow the usage of my song in some gangster song,” he declared.
According to Rolling Stone, Coolio received Wonder’s approval after eliminating profanity and some graphic lyrics from an early version of the song. In 1996, Coolio won a Grammy for the song, which was heavily played on American, European, and Australian radio stations.
But the singer wasn’t just “a one-hit wonder,” according to hip-hop journalist Soren Baker, who spoke to Rolling Stone. In a genre typically characterized by harsh and filthy rhymes, his funky rhythms and pop-infused style broke new ground, Baker said, appealing “to those who would normally be put off by a classic, bone-crushing gangster rap song.”
In addition to hits like “C U When U Get There” and “1,2,3,4 (Sumpin’ New),” the rapper also worked with other musicians and recorded some timeless songs from his early years. In 2002, his song “Dexter (What’s His Name?)” was included in Cartoon Network’s “Dexter’s Laboratory: The Hip Hop Experiment,” a collection of hip-hop songs influenced by the series. He was best known for his 1996 hit “Aw, Here It Goes,” the theme song for Nickelodeon’s “Kenan and Kel.”
Coolio produced music for the shows “Sabrina the Teenage Witch” and “The Nanny,” made appearances in “Big Brother,” “Celebrity Wife Swap,” and “Rachael vs. Guy: Celebrity Cook-Off,” and participated in reality TV shows “Big Brother” and “Celebrity Wife Swap.”
The rapper, who suffered from asthma, worked as a spokesperson for the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America to spread awareness about the debilitating condition. He joined Surgeon General David Satcher in 2000 to raise awareness of the issue, noting that black children have a higher asthma mortality rate than white children, according to a story in The Washington Post from that year.
Tribute To Coolio
As word of his passing spread, celebrity tributes poured in.
Ice Cube, a fellow rapper, tweeted, “This is horrible news.” “I have seen this man’s ascent to the top of his profession firsthand. In peace, please.”
RIP Coolio pic.twitter.com/Z53f3n6HDU
— Al Yankovic (@alyankovic) September 29, 2022
Pfeiffer attributed the “great song” “Gangsta’s Paradise” with making “Dangerous Minds” a huge hit in 1995.
I recall him being really gracious. I still get chills when I hear the song 30 years later,” she commented on Instagram. “Sending his family love and brightness.”-
Coolio was referred to as “one of the finest dudes I’ve known” by rapper MC Hammer.
He posted a black and white photo of the rapper under the words “Good people. RIP Coolio” and then added a second photo of the group, which also included Tupac and Snoop Dogg.
Questlove, an Oscar-winning musician, and filmmaker, merely tweeted “Peaceful Journey Brother.”
Rapper Flavor Flav claimed that he and Coolio were scheduled to “perform together on Tuesday” and that his pal “liked telling everyone that he was the West Coast Flavor Flav.”
Rest in power was the tribute phrase sung by singer Debbie Harry, and “Love & Respect” was also written by rapper LL Cool J. Al Yankovic, a musician, who shared a photo of the late rapper and himself.