One of hip-hop’s OGs has passed away. Coolio is dead at age 59.
According to TMZ, the “Gangster’s Paradise” legend was using the bathroom while visiting a friend, and didn’t come out for a while. The friend checked on him, found him lying on the floor and called 911. EMTs pronounced him dead at the scene.
Coolio, born Artis Leon Ivey Junior, leaves behind six children.
Born in Monessen, Pennsylvania, Coolio rose to fame on the West Coast in the mid-’90s with a trio of albums, including his best-known album and single, “Gangsta’s Paradise.” He also wrote and performed the theme song for the Nickelodeon live action series Kenan & Kel and lent “Gangsta’s Paradise” to the Michelle Pfeiffer movie Dangerous Minds. He also made guest appearances in Kenan & Kel, The Nanny and Sabrina the Teenage Witch.
His career wasn’t limited to just music. In the 2000s, Coolio branched out to reality TV, with stints on Celebrity Big Brother, Ultimate Big Brother and Wife Swap.
An investigation has been opened into Coolio’s death. He is believed to have suffered a heart attack, and no foul play is suspected.
Written by: Tony Williams