Rapper Coolio Is Dead At Age 59
It’s been a rough year for losing huge names in the entertainment industry and beyond, and this morning we’re sad to report that rapper Coolio has passed away at the age of 59.
The news was broken by the musician’s talent manager, Sheila Finegan, who confirmed that the world lost the bright star on Wednesday afternoon. The loss of Coolio only adds to the recent devastation we’ve felt of other huge names including filmmaker Jean-Luc Goddard, David A. Arnold, and, of course, Queen Elizabeth II.
It’s reported that while he was visiting a friend on Wednesday afternoon, Coolio left to use the restroom, but when he didn’t come out for a while, his friend grew concerned and went to check on him.
After calling for him outside the door garnered no response, his friend broke into the bathroom and found the rapper laying on the floor unresponsive. The friend immediately called the paramedics who arrived shortly thereafter and pronounced the entertainer dead.
Over the last several hours, police have investigated the scene, but have found no signs of foul play. No drugs or drug paraphernalia were spotted during the investigation, and an autopsy will be done to reveal the cause of death. However, an EMT who was first on the scene, believes that Coolio most likely suffered cardiac arrest.
After working hard throughout the 1980s and into the early 1990s, Coolio would launch to success after signing a deal with Tommy Boy Records in 1994. That same year he would release his uber successful debut solo album, It Takes a Thief which would quickly find the single “Fantastic Voyage” taking the world by storm, securing a Platinum status for the record.
Loved by fans and critics alike, the record would set the artist up for a chart-topping takeover with the release of his follow-up album one year later.
The year was 1995 and the radio was jam-packed with hits like Mariah Carey’s “Fantasy” and Real McCoy’s “Come and Get Your Love,” but one song was dominating the charts and playing on what seemed like an endless loop – Coolio’s “Gangsta’s Paradise.”
The song was originally created to be placed in the Michelle Pfeiffer led blockbuster of a feature that was Dangerous Minds, (which if you haven’t seen, we implore you to check it out – a true ‘90s classic), and the rest is history. It would soon climb to the top of the charts around the world, taking home the title of the No. 1 single in the United States in 1995.
But, it didn’t stop there. Still climbing to the top, the song would land Coolio a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance, leading him to make moves to create an album of the same name for the single to call home.
There was also a dispute between the rapper and parody musician, Weird Al Yankovic after the accordion-playing songwriter didn’t ask Coolio for permission to turn the song into “Amish Paradise” – something we’re bound to hear about in the upcoming Daniel Radcliffe led, Weird: The Al Yankovic Story.
Other prominent appearances in the ‘90s for Coolio would include a compilation album with other Red Hot Organization artists including Biz Markie and Wu-Tang Clan as well as laying down the title track for Keenan & Kel.
Since then, he appeared in a slew of TV shows including Celebrity Big Brother, Wife Swap, The Nanny, and Black Jesus – he also had his own web-series titled Cookin’ with Coolio.
A lyrical genius with a personality to match, Coolio would lead the way for many other hip-hop artists through the years. Our condolences go out to his friends and family during this excruciatingly heartbreaking time.