‘Gangsta Paradise’ rapper Coolio dies at 59

Coolio, who won a Grammy for Best Solo Rap Performance for “Gangsta Paradise,” died at the age of 59 at a friend’s home in Los Angeles. The reason was not immediately clear.

Coolio, who won a Grammy for Best Solo Rap Performance for “Gangsta Paradise,” died at the age of 59 at a friend’s home in Los Angeles. The reason was not immediately clear.

Rapper Coolio, who was one of the biggest names in hip-hop in the 1990s with hits including “Gangsta Paradise” and “Fantastic Voyage,” died Wednesday at the age of 59, his manager said.

Coolio, whose legal name was Artis Leon Ive Jr., died at a friend’s home in Los Angeles, longtime manager Jerez Posey told The Associated Press. The reason was not immediately clear.

Coolio won a Grammy for Best Solo Rap Performance for “Gangsta’s Paradise”, a 1995 hit from the soundtrack to the Michelle Pfeiffer film. dangerous Minds which sampled Stevie Wonder’s 1976 song “Pastime Paradise”.

He was nominated for five other Grammys during a career that began in the late 1980s.

Who was Coolio?

Born in Monsen, Pennsylvania, south of Pittsburgh, Coolio moved to Compton, California, where he went to community college. He worked as a volunteer firefighter and in airport security before devoting himself full time to the hip-hop scene.

His career began in 1994 with the release of his debut album on Tommy Boy Records, it takes a thief, It’s opening track, “Fantastic Voyage”, would peak at number 3 on the Billboard Hot 100.

A year later, “Gangsta’s Paradise” would become the #1 single with its deep opening lyrics:

“As I walk through the valley of the shadow of death, I take a look at my life and realize there’s not much left, ’cause I’m blastin’ and laugh ‘so long, that even my mom would think That’s my mind is gone.”

Reaction to Coolio’s death

Social media was abuzz with reactions to the unexpected death.

“This is sad news,” Ice Cube said on Twitter. “First time I see this man grinding at the top of the industry. Rest in Peace, @coolio.”

“Peaceful travel bro,” Questlove tweeted.