Coolio (Artis Leon Ivey Jr.), dead at 59
September 28, 2022 8:20 PM   Subscribe

..from TMZ: Coolio, born Artis Leon Ivey Jr., was found dead in a friend's house by his crew. No cause of death has been revealed, but TMZ is noting that there weren't any drugs on scene.

Coolio had one #1 hit: Gangsta's Paradise featuring LV; and had other hits: Fantastic Voyage, 1,2,3,4 (Sumpin' New), and C U When U Get There feat. 40 Thevz. May he rest in peace.
posted by kfholy (59 comments total) 5 users marked this as a favorite
 
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posted by WhyamIhereagain at 8:38 PM on September 28



posted by riruro at 8:42 PM on September 28 [2 favorites]


I was just the right age to enjoy the “Fantastic Voyage” video, unironically, when it first came out.

This one hits hard.

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posted by armeowda at 8:43 PM on September 28 [2 favorites]


When he toured Australia, the Canberra Times asked him some interview questions about the then proposed light rail, and urban planning, and he came up with what (as a planner) I think is a timeless line about anxiety over urban change:
“It's a very inexpensive form of transportation and very easy to get around, so yes, it's dope.”
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The dreadlocked rapper had some advice for Yarralumla residents worried their leafy suburb will be transformed into a “ghetto of crime and god knows what else” by the residential development of the former Canberra Brickworks.
“Don't worry about that because if you are it's probably already a ghetto,” he said.
posted by Fiasco da Gama at 8:44 PM on September 28 [71 favorites]


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posted by May Kasahara at 8:58 PM on September 28


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posted by HypotheticalWoman at 9:01 PM on September 28


Coolio was originally very angry with Weird Al over "Amish Paradise". There was a misunderstanding between the two over whether or not Weird Al had permission to make the parody. Years later, he was asked about it in an interview with Dan Ozzi. Thought this was a great answer.

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Ozzi: When I asked people what I should ask Coolio, the most common question I got, the thing most people seem to want to know: Do you still have beef with Weird Al?

Coolio: Fuck no, man, I let that go so long ago. Let me say this: I apologized to Weird Al a long time ago and I was wrong. Y’all remember that, everybody out there who reads this shit. Real men and real people should be able to admit when they’re wrong and I was wrong, bro. Come on, who the fuck am I, bro? He did parodies of Michael Jackson, he did parodies of all kinds of people and I took offense to it because I was being cocky and shit and being stupid and I was wrong and I should’ve embraced that shit and went with it. I listened to it a couple years after that and it’s actually funny as shit. It’s one of those things where I made a wrong call and nobody stopped me. That’s one thing I’m still upset about—my management at the time. Somebody should’ve stopped me from making that statement because it was dumb. And I think it hurt me a little bit. It made me seem stupid.
posted by Teegeeack AV Club Secretary at 9:17 PM on September 28 [169 favorites]


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posted by Kattullus at 9:19 PM on September 28


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posted by holborne at 9:20 PM on September 28


I was a young teen during Coolio's rise, and his MTV videos are permanently etched into my brain. The beat+chorus of "I remember" still hits me just right. Going back through his singles tonight, I love his playfulness & positivity in his 'party jams' that still acknowledge the reality of growing up in Compton in the 90's.

And the look of astonishment on Sean Evans' face while Coolio cleans a wing to the bone after DROWNING it in a last dab....
That was a real MF. He was hella cool.
posted by onehalfjunco at 9:22 PM on September 28 [26 favorites]


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posted by rrrrrrrrrt at 9:33 PM on September 28


Made one of the first CDs I ever owned! (Note: I did not own it, I regularly stole it from my older brother.) And yet another person dying way before his time. It's starting to freak me out.

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posted by grandiloquiet at 10:08 PM on September 28 [4 favorites]


I was a little too old and had musical tastes a bit too different to know his music very well, but I liked him and every time I saw him somewhere, it made me smile a bit. Shocked that he's gone.
posted by Ickster at 10:16 PM on September 28 [3 favorites]


if Coolio dies before Kissinger... then our nation is CURSED. the only cure?? nuclear war
@dril February, 12 2014
posted by chrchr at 10:25 PM on September 28 [34 favorites]


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posted by pt68 at 11:26 PM on September 28


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posted by ellieBOA at 11:54 PM on September 28


"After making a guest appearance at a local club in Preston UCLAN, we got him back the next day to cook us a 3 course meal and share stories of his life and have a laugh!"

Gangster's Paradise (Acoustic) Coolio ft Uclan Students
posted by fairmettle at 12:03 AM on September 29 [4 favorites]


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posted by GenjiandProust at 12:16 AM on September 29


My absolute favorite thing about the artist:
Coolio raps for a living, but he’d rather ride dragons. When he’s not onstage or in the studio, he reads and rereads Anne McCaffrey’s series of Pern fantasy novels. “I think it’s her compassion,” he says. “Plus I like the idea of speaking to dragons telepathically.” So today in London, Coolio has canceled a smorgasbord of phone interviews with Scandinavian journalists so he can restock his Pern library. Once he’s completed his collection, he plans to line them up in order and read them all again. Coolio strides into a large Dillon’s bookstore, locates the science-fiction section, and starts snatching McCaffrey’s novels off the shelves. He quickly considers each one before shoving it back or tossing it in the pile of keeps at his feet: Dragonflight, Dragsonsdawn, All the Ways of Pern, Firstfall, and Moreta: Dragonlady of Pern. But he scowls: There’s a glitch. “Where the fuck’s The White Dragon?”
(Excerpt from “The Rebirth of Coolio,” the cover story of Details, March 1996, at interviewer's own website.)
posted by Iris Gambol at 12:27 AM on September 29 [87 favorites]


Nostr@drilamus...
posted by chavenet at 12:28 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


That was a real motherfucker. He was hella cool.

Gone too soon, G.

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posted by Ten Cold Hot Dogs at 1:32 AM on September 29 [6 favorites]


From Twitter:
"RIP Coolio. Never forget his appearance on Irish daytime chatshow Open House, who, legend has it, booked him by mistake. They hadn't arranged backing dancers, so he made the middle-age production crew dress up and do it instead. Best TV ever"
Link to tweet with video...
posted by scorbet at 2:14 AM on September 29 [15 favorites]


Aw, man. This really sucks.

I’ll just light this one up...
It’s All the Way Live

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posted by Thorzdad at 2:34 AM on September 29


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posted by hydrobatidae at 2:44 AM on September 29


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posted by mersen at 3:17 AM on September 29


I was in Ocean City, Maryland on break with a friend when I first saw "Fantastic Voyage" on MTV and it's still the exact song that's playing in my head when I think of that time. Same for "1, 2, 3, 4"-- I was in Los Angeles for the first time, driving my rental car to Loma Linda's dental school (where I was someone's board patient for licensure) and that song came on for the first time. I couldn't get enough of it.

Coolio's music had kind of drifted out of my life over the past couple of decades but it will forever be associated with those days so many years ago.
posted by drstrangelove at 3:48 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]




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Another amazing artist down for Gen X. His songs were ubiquitous in the 90s and they were always a good time.
posted by Kitteh at 4:12 AM on September 29


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This sucks
posted by Faintdreams at 4:29 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


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posted by Gelatin at 4:31 AM on September 29


His last big hit in the US was 'C U When You Get There.'

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posted by box at 4:54 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


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posted by lalochezia at 5:03 AM on September 29


Huh, I have not thought about Gangsta's Paradise in years, probably, but I find I remember all the words.

Only 59, what a shame.

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posted by the primroses were over at 5:04 AM on September 29


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posted by jadepearl at 6:02 AM on September 29


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posted by condour75 at 6:16 AM on September 29


Too young :(

Thankful for the little stories people are sharing in this thread that show him a little more as a person. I didn't/don't know much about him as an individual, but seems like he was... pretty cool.
posted by obfuscation at 6:44 AM on September 29 [8 favorites]


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posted by GoblinHoney at 7:35 AM on September 29


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posted by suetanvil at 7:36 AM on September 29


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posted by socialjusticeworrier at 7:37 AM on September 29


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posted by ZeusHumms at 7:58 AM on September 29


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posted by eckeric at 8:08 AM on September 29


Saying "coolio" became a silly way of saying "cool" until it just became sort of normal to say coolio. Time passed and saying coolio became really cringe-inducing. But I still think "coolio" in my head from time to time. Gangsta's Paradise and Weird Al's take on it were both great tunes. The fact that Coolio was a big Dragonrider's buff reminds me that Lizzo once sang and played flute in a prog-rock band before becoming a huge solo artist.

All these famous people we know by hits and clips and news stories and Tweets were once just kids and teenagers like every one of us. RIP, Coolio.
posted by SoberHighland at 8:09 AM on September 29 [11 favorites]


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posted by dlugoczaj at 8:18 AM on September 29


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posted by djseafood at 8:19 AM on September 29


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posted by JustSayNoDawg at 8:22 AM on September 29


well this does suck and he was way too young.

but, like, I cannot help but also feel, ok TMZ is it necessary to mention that there were no drugs on the scene? would you mention that if I died? if Barbara Walters died? let's just wait until his family decides if they will release the cause of death. it doesn't matter anyway, a talented and interesting person is gone.

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posted by supermedusa at 9:18 AM on September 29 [6 favorites]


Do you still have beef with Weird Al?

Coolio: Fuck no, man, I let that go so long ago. Let me say this: I apologized to Weird Al a long time ago and I was wrong.


I think they're good.
posted by chavenet at 9:46 AM on September 29 [8 favorites]


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posted by hydra77 at 9:47 AM on September 29


Voice of Kwanzaabot.
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posted by The Underpants Monster at 10:23 AM on September 29 [1 favorite]


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posted by kitten kaboodle at 10:29 AM on September 29


supermedusa, it's TMZ, and also Coolio had on-and-off drug problems. Another great story: he once kicked his habit by becoming a firefighter in San Jose.
posted by Iris Gambol at 10:50 AM on September 29 [5 favorites]


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posted by filtergik at 10:54 AM on September 29


What, nobody remembers the web series he did on My Damn Channel, Cooking With Coolio?

Very much early-web-video before it became ubiquitous.
posted by Eikonaut at 12:09 PM on September 29 [5 favorites]


Man. He was a real motherfucker, and was hella cool.
posted by zenon at 12:49 PM on September 29 [6 favorites]


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posted by Sphinx at 1:13 PM on September 29


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posted by The Great Big Mulp at 1:56 PM on September 29


In Old English literature, we find this concept called a beot: a boast made in public, which once made, the speaker must fulfill.

Naming oneself Coolio is a beot. And god, did he make good on it.
posted by Pallas Athena at 5:05 PM on September 29 [21 favorites]


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posted by interogative mood at 8:03 AM on September 30


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posted by Mutant Lobsters from Riverhead at 5:27 PM on October 2


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