DMX is one of the most iconic rappers of all time. In 2021, we lost the icon at the age of 51. His work, as a musician and actor, remains significant and continues to resonate with fans. DMX passed away on April 9, 2021.
The Passion of Earl Simmons
DMX was born on December 18, 1970, in Mount Vernon, New York as Earl Simmons. Simmons was best known as a rapper, identifiable by his strong voice and aggressive delivery. The artist started getting interested in hip hop at the age of 14. He was balancing writing lyrics, and honing his craft, with prison time and the law.
The passion of Earl Simmons was impossible to overlook. He was able to take his life, the lows, and the highs, and convey it all in a way that was mesmerizing to listen to. There seemed to be no artifice when it came to his music. Simmons always came across as genuine and honest.
In 1998, DMX released his debut solo album. It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot was a massive success. “Ruff Ryders’ Anthem” was one of the hit songs on the record. It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot established DMX as a rising star in music. The uniqueness of his voice, and his powerful delivery, made DMX a standout. It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot let the industry, and listeners, know that a new superstar had arrived.
More hit albums would follow, like Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood, and ... And Then There Was X. Each release would help to solidify DMX’s career and legacy.
DMX’s larger than life personality caught the attention of Hollywood filmmakers. He was able to standout in films like Belly, Romeo Must Die and Exit Wounds. DMX had a charisma and energy that was able to work for him as a musician and actor. Later in his career, he was able to laugh at his persona, in the Chris Rock film, Top Five. X played himself in his cameo role, and he was willing to poke fun at his image, and some of his legal troubles.
DMX died on April 9, 2021, in White Plains, New York. He left behind a library of work that is still enjoyed by millions of fans. The uniqueness of DMX has inspired countless rappers and creators. After his death, Shoe Palace was inspired to create a collection that was dedicated to DMX. The collection launched in 2022. The line included hoodies, tees, joggers, and shorts. All the pieces featured DMX art, quotes and imagery. Every piece was made with DMX’s style and persona in mind.
- Adam C. Better
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