The Grammy-nominated rapper known as DMX has died after several days in a vegetative state. He was 50 years old.
His passing comes after suffering a heart attack that left him in a coma in the hospital for most of the past week. Many outlets are reporting that his heart attack was due to a drug overdose, but that has not been confirmed. At this time, all that is known of the health issues leading to his death are that he was unresponsive while in the hospital, had little brain activity, and has now passed away at White Plains Hospital in New York. His family has issued statements, saying they’re grieving his passing and will release information about memorial services once those arrangements have been made.
While DMX had a known history of drug addiction, he was in rehab in late 2019. He canceled several concerts and checked himself in. His lawyers and managers have spoken for the family to the public, and none of them have said that any drug use was confirmed as a cause for his heart attack. The rapper was also known to suffer from asthma since childhood. Previously, outlets have reported substance abuse issues when it later turned out he was having complications from asthma. Asthma doubles the risk of a heart attack.
The rapper came to be known as DMX, but was born Earl Simmons. He had a challenging childhood, spend time in jail as a teenager, and then signed on with music label Ruff House at only 22 years old. He went on to release many singles, but they weren’t particularly successful at first. DMX kept at it, though. He worked on tracks with respected artists like Jay-Z and LL Cool J.
Eventually, DMX was signed on to Ruff Ryders and released Get at Me Dog in 1998, six years after he was signed by his first label. This hit made him a known name. His debut album then premiered in the number one spot on the Billboard charts. This was a rare thing to do with a first album, but it came after years of making his name known. He would go on to hit the number one spot again and again.
While DMX was mostly known as a rapper, he was also in movies. He starred in Belly, Exit Wounds, Cradle 2 the Grave, and others. His work was also featured on soundtracks for blockbuster hits like Deadpool.
A lot of his most well-known work as an artist was done in the late 1990s and early 2000s. However, DMX was still creating right up to the point of suffering from a heart attack. In the summer of 2020, during the coronavirus pandemic, the rapper went on YouTube with Snoop Dogg to do a Verzuz Battle. He spent over an hour on the live stream entertaining over a million fans with the virtual performance. Over the past week, many fans have revisited the YouTube video to leave prayers for DMX while he was in the hospital.
While the rapper faced many challenges over the course of his life, he never stopped fighting. His family’s official statements have called him a warrior, which sounds like how DMX would want to be remembered.