One of the biggest 1990s rappers received one Grammy He was nominated for five other Grammys.
LOS ANGELES — Coolio one of the rappers who was one of hip-hop’s most famous names in the 1990s, with hits such as “Gangsta’s Paradise” and “Fantastic Voyage” passed away on Wednesday, aged 59, according to his manager.
Coolio the legal name of Coolio is Artis Leon Ivey Sr. was found dead on the Los Angeles home of a friend and the longtime managing Jarez Posey reported to The Associated Press. The cause of death was not immediately known.
Coolio was awarded an Grammy for the best solo rap performance in “Gangsta’s Paradise,”” the hit song from 1995 on the soundtrack of Michelle Pfeiffer movie “Dangerous Minds” which was a sample of Stevie Wonder’s song from 1976 “Pastime Paradise.”
He was nominated for five more Grammys in a career that started in the late 1980s.
Born at Monessen, Pennsylvania south of Pittsburgh, Coolio moved to Compton, California, where was a student at a the community college. He was a firefighter volunteer and at airport security, before committing all of his time to the hip hop scene.
The career of the singer-songwriter began with the release in 1994 on his album debut Tommy Boy Records, “It is a Thief.” The album’s first single, “Fantastic Voyage,” was able to reach the top spot at No. 3, on the Billboard Hot 100.
One year later, “Gangsta’s Paradise” would be an No. 1 hit single, thanks to its dark opening line:
“As I travel in the valley shadow of death I take a good look around my life and realize that there’s little left. I’ve been banging and laughing for for so long that my mom thinks my mind has gone.”
Social media was abuzz with the reactions to the sudden death.
“This is a sad day,” Ice Cube declared in a tweet. “I have witnessed firsthand this man’s journey up to the very top of the game. Rest In Peace, @Coolio.”
“Peaceful journey with your brother,” Questlove tweeted.