The world was thrown into mourning at the announcement of the death of American rapper and singer Earl Simmons, popularly known as DMX, on Friday.
A statement from his hospital in White Plain, New York, where he had been hospitalised since April 2, reports that DMX had suffered from a “catastrophic cardiac arrest.”
His family announced his death in an official statement. “We are deeply saddened to announce today that our loved one, DMX, birth name of Earl Simmons, passed away at 50-years-old at White Plains Hospital with his family by his side after being placed on life support for the past few days,” the statement reads in part.
“Earl was a warrior who fought till the very end,” the statement continues. “He loved his family with all of his heart, and we cherish the times we spent with him.”
DMX had suffered a heart attack on April 2, and he had been hospitalised until his death. In the days that follow, the artist’s representatives reported that he was lying in a vegetative state. Outside the hospital, family, friends and thousands of fans had gathered playing his music and praying with their arms held together in the shape of an X.
Born in Mouth Vernon, New York, on December 18, 1970, Earl Simmons had grown up in a disjointed home and ended up in a boys home at age 14. Earl Simmons bonded with other students at the boys home over their love of hip hop music, which shaped his career.
On his return home, Simmons partnered with local rapper Ready Ron who had been impressed by his beatboxing skills. Choosing a stage name, Simmons chose “DMX” after the Oberheim DMX drum used at the boys home. The name was also later interpreted as “Dark Man X.”
In 1984, DMX launched his music career partnering with Ready Ron. He was incarcerated in 1988 for carjacking, and there, he began to take rapping even more seriously, writing his own lyrics.
Following his release later in the summer of 1988, DMX began selling his mixtapes of him rapping on other songs instrumentals. He began to gather attention, and in 1991, he was mentioned in The Source Unsigned Hype column.
In 1992, DMX was signed to Columbia Records’ subsidiary label RuffelHouse, under which he released his debut single “Born Loser.” In 1994, he released his second single, “Make a Move”, and went on to make an appearance on Mic Geronimo’s debut album “Time to Build”, along with Jay-Z, Ja Rule and Mic Geronimo.
Signed to Def Jam, DMX released his debut major-label single Get at Me Dog in February 1998. He released his debut album, It’s Dark, and Hell Is Hot, in May 1998, which debuted at number one on the US Billboard 200 chart and sold over five million copies. In December 1998, he released his second album, Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood which also debuted one on the US Billboard 200 and went multi-platinum.
On his third album, And Then There Was X featured his most popular single, “Party Up (Up in Here”, which also doubles as his first Top Ten hit on the R&B charts and earned him his first Grammy nomination in 2021. Party Up (Up in Here) was nominated for the Best Rap Solo Performance at the 2001 Grammy Awards, and the album, which went six times platinum, was also nominated at the 2001 Grammys for Best Rap Album.
Personal Life and Criminal Record
DMX in 1999 married his childhood friend Tashera Simmons, and they stayed married until July 2010 when Tashera announced their features. DMX fathered fifteen children, four of which were between him and Tashera.
The artist filed for bankruptcy three times. He was arrested multiple times for various offences, including drugs, resisting arrest and reckless driving.
At age 14, DMX became addicted to cocaine after smoking a cocaine laced marijuana blunt given to him by Ready Ron. Since then, he battled with constant drug-related problems.
He suffered cerebral hypoxia on April 2, possibly resulting from a drug overdose, which eventually led to his death.
Awards and Nominations
DMX received 3 Grammy Award nominations in his lifetime:
- And Then There was X: Best Rap Album (2001)
- Party Up (Up in Here): Best Rap Solo Performance (2001)
- Who We Be: Best Rap Solo Performance (2002)
He also received MTV Video Music Award nominations
- Ruff Ryders’ Anthem: Best Rap Video (1999)
- Party Up (Up in Here): Best Rap Video (2000)
- No Sunshine: Best Video from a Film (2001)
- Who We Be: Best Rap Video (2002) Best Breakthrough Video (2002)
- Touch It (Remix) Best Rap Video (2006) Best Male Video (2006)
In 2000 he won the American Music Award Favorite Rap/Hip-Hop Artist. In 2001 he was also nominated for the same award.
DMX also featured in several movies and Tv Shows, including The Chris Rock Show, SouthPark, Fast and Fierce: Death Row, to mention a few.
The internet went ablaze at the announcement of the death of rapper DMX. Celebrities and fans have shared their tributes, recounting exciting moments about him, applauding his music and sharing their condolences with his family.
American Power Couple Jay Z and Beyonce have also purchased his masters, which would be given to his family.
[READ ALSO] Glycolic Acid And Its Benefits To Skincare