LeBron James is one of the thousands of fans offering their condolences following the death of rapper DMX. Real name Earl Simmons, the iconic musician died Friday after suffering a heart attack over the weekend. He was 50 years old.
His family released a statement announcing his death Friday afternoon.
“We are deeply saddened to announce today that our loved one, DMX, birth name of Earl Simmons, passed away at 50-year-old at White Plains Hospital with his family by his side after being placed on life support for the past few days. Earl was a warrior who fought till the very end. He loved his family with all of his heart, and we cherish the times we spent with him. Earl’s music inspired countless fans across the world and his iconic legacy will live on forever. We appreciate all of the love and support during this incredibly difficult time. Please respect our privacy as we grieve the loss of our brother, father, uncle, and the man the world knew as DMX. We will share information about his memorial service once details are finalized.”
DMX had a long history of addiction. He went to rehab several times, but he admitted he would backslide. For years, he spoke about his addiction to crack cocaine. The drugs affected both his professional and personal life as well as his health.
DMX Changed The Rap World
DMX was first noticed in the rap world with his single, “Get at Me Dog” from the 1998 album It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot, which debuted at number one on the Billboard Hot 200. The album has since sold over five million copies. His gravelly voice and unique barking delivery helped him stand out.
Later that same year, DMX released Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood. His second album also debuted at number one. It stayed there for three weeks straight. Over half of a million units shipped in the first week. His sophomore album went 4x platinum. He had a number of hits over his career, including the song “X Gonna Give it to Ya.”
While his career has cooled over the years, he kept a large contingent of fans. Hundreds held a vigil of the White Plains Hospital where he was being cared for.