The Passing of DMX

The legendary rapper performs in front of a crowd. Photo courtesy of vanityfair.com

The legendary rapper performs in front of a crowd. Photo courtesy of vanityfair.com

Tionni Reed, Staff Writer

Legendary Ruff Ryders rapper Dark Man X DMX passed away earlier this month at age 50 after suffering from heart complications.

He died at White Plains hospital surrounded by family. DMX was best known for his signature ruff style of rapping and for the struggles he would rap about in his music.

DMX was not just any celebrity, his success gave people hope and inspiration to people living with similar conditions. .“His message of triumph over struggle, his search for the light out of darkness, his pursuit of truth and grace brought us closer to our own humanity,” his record label also said in a statement describing him as “nothing less than a giant.”

DMX was born Earl Simmons in Mount Vernon, NY on December 8, 1970 though later his family  moved to the projects in Yonkers. DMX grew up in a broken household, and was exposed to violence, poverty and drugs at a young age.

He would talk about how as a kid living in group homes was a regular thing for him and how his grandmother was the only one who really loved him. His song “I Miss You” was a dedication to her after she passed. “It’s like when you left, you took the Lord with you. Why couldn’t I come when he came to get you?”

DMX has been synonymous with dogs since the start of his career. Pitbulls specifically are associated with him, with one story on Drinkchamps saying that he even trained one of them to adlib for him during his freestyles. He said “Careful for my dog she might bite you” then his dog growled and he continued rapping.

DMX became interested in hip hop as a teenager. He started off as a human beatboxer and a DJ before getting into rap where he proved to be really skilled at freestyling.

He signed to Def Jam Records when he was around 27 years old making his first major debut “Get at Me Dog” chronicled struggle olled by “Just Robbin’ to Eat” further set a perfect tone for what DMX’s music would be:  intense and unapologetic.

His first album on that label “It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot” sold over five million copies and made its way to number one on the Billboard 200 chart in the U.S soon after. His first five albums all debuted at No.1 on the Billboard 200. DMX is the first and so far only rapper to have ever accomplished this.

Two official memorial services have been announced so far for him and his family. “Celebration of Life” will be held on Saturday, April 24,2021 at 4 p.m. EST. and is not open to the public but will be broadcasted and available to watch on the official DMX YouTube account.

“Homegoing Celebration” will be held the following day April 25th, 2021 live on BET. Streaming an ongoing marathon for the likes of his documentary Ruff Ryders Chronicles will honor the legacy of DMX.