Coolio, ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ Rapper, Dead at 59 – Report
Coolio has reportedly died.
The "Gangsta's Paradise" artist’s manager Jarez reportedly told the Hollywood gossip site that Coolio was visiting a friend at a home in Los Angeles when he passed. The rapper allegedly went into his friend's bathroom, but never came out. Paramedics were called around 4 p.m., but Coolio was pronounced dead at the scene. Jarez reportedly said the veteran rhymer died of cardiac arrest, although an official cause of death has yet to be determined.
XXL has reached out to Jarez for further confirmation.
Coolio, born Artis Leon Ivey Jr, had major mainstream success in the 1990s, primarily with his 1995 hit single "Gangsta's Paradise." The song reached No. 1 on the Billboard Hot 100 chart the same year it was released. "Gangsta’s Paradise" earned further widespread acclaim after being the main song featured in the 1995 film Dangerous Minds starring Michelle Pfeiffer. The track won Coolio a Grammy award for Best Rap Solo Performance. It has since been certified double-platinum in the U.S., and also sold millions of additional units worldwide.
The song was the title track to Coolio's 1995 breakthrough album, Gangsta’s Paradise, which also features two other successful singles: "1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin' New)" and "Too Hot," the latter of which features J.T. Taylor of Kool & the Gang on the hook. Gangsta's Paradise is also certified double-platinum, with over two million units sold in the U.S. alone.
The MC released a total of eight studio albums, beginning with It Takes a Thief in 1994, and ending with what would be his final LP, From the Bottom 2 the Top, in 2009.
Outside of music, Coolio appeared as an actor in various films, including the 1997 adaptation of Batman & Robin. He also made cameos in TV shows Sabrina The Teenage Witch, The Nanny, Malcolm & Eddie and more.