Beloved ’90s Rapper Coolio Dies

Everyone in the music world is paying tribute to the hip-hop legend who brought us "Gangsta's Paradise."

The iconic 1990s rapper Coolio (born Leon Ivey Jr.), has passed away at the age of 59, reports have confirmed.

Known by many for one of his greatest hits, “Gangsta’s Paradise,” Coolio rose to fame with songs that shared dark details of everyday urban life—many based on his own experiences growing up in California. 

He went on to produce dynamic albums such as It Takes a Thief and My Soul, and became a pop culture icon with frequent appearances on MTV, as well as TV sitcoms and cameo appearances in films like Batman and Robin

According to Pitchfork, “Coolio dropped his most famous single, ‘Gangsta’s Paradise,’ for the movie Dangerous Minds” which also earned him a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance. 

The cause of death is still unknown, but the rapper’s manager Jarez Posey revealed that “He was found unresponsive on the bathroom floor of a friend’s LA house.” 

Celebrity friends around the world have begun posting their tributes to the music legend. 

“This is sad news,” wrote Ice Cube on Twitter. “I witness first hand this man’s grind to the top of the industry. Rest In Peace @Coolio.”

Snoop Dogg posted a photo of Coolio and himself on Instagram. 

Michelle Pfeiffer, star of Dangerous Minds, wrote a touching tribute. “30 years later I still get chills when I hear the song,” she adds.

“Coolio was the West Coast Flavor Flav,” tweeted the rapper and Flavor of Love star. “He loved telling everyone that. We was supposed to perform together this Tuesday. #RIP my friend.”

Others from the industry also are feeling the loss of their rap role model and friend:

“I’m freaking out I just heard my good friend Coolio passed away,” tweeted Vanilla Ice.

Quest Love tweeted “Peaceful journey brother.” Al Yankovic added “RIP Coolio.”

We hope Coolio has found his own Gangsta’s Paradise at rest.

Katka Lapelosova
Kat is a born and raised New Yorker exploring the world as she writes, eats, and everything in between. Read more
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