Coolio death: ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ rapper dead at 59

Coolio death: ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ rapper dead at 59

Coolio, the famed Nineties rapper, has died aged 59.

A cause of death has not yet been confirmed.

Coolio's representatives have confirmed the news of his death to The Independent.

“We are saddened by the loss of our dear friend and client, Coolio, who passed away this afternoon,” they said in a statement. “He touched the world with the gift of his talent and will be missed profoundly.

“Thank you to everyone worldwide who has listened to his music and to everyone who has been reaching out regarding his passing. Please have Coolio’s loved ones in your thoughts and prayers.”

Coolio, real name Artis Leon Ivey Jr, is best known for his 1995 Grammy Award-winning hit single “Gangsta’s Paradise”, which was released as the soundtrack for the Michelle Pfeiffer film, Dangerous Minds. The song spent three weeks at the top of Billboard’s Hot 100 list.

He was also known for providing the opening track “Aw, Here It Goes!” for the 1996 Nickelodeon show Kenan & Kel.

The rapper also dabbled in acting, making his debut in the TV series The Parent ‘Hood (1995). He also played a voice role in Futurama as Kwanzaa-bot and made a cameo in Batman & Robin (1997).

Tributes from the music world immediately poured in for the late rapper.

Coolio’s contemporary Ice Cube tweeted: “This is sad news. I witness first hand this man’s grind to the top of the industry. Rest In Peace.”

 (Twitter)
(Twitter)

Musician Questlove tweeted: “Peaceful Journey Brother.”

Hot Ones presenter Sean Evans, who interviewed the rapper on his show, wrote: “First CD I ever bought in my life and the most legendary Wing 10 Last Dab these eyes have ever seen RIP Coolio.”

Bad Boys actor Martin Lawrence tweeted: “My deepest condolences and prayers go out to the family of @Coolio.”