Coolio, known for massive 1990s hip-hop hits like “Fantastic Voyage,” “C U When U Get There,” “1,2,3,4 (Sumpin’ New)” and the Dangerous Minds movie theme “Gangsta’s Paradise,” has died of a suspected cardiac arrest, according to TMZ. He was 59 years old. The West Coast rapper, whose real name was Artis Leon Ivey Jr., is survived by his six children.
Coolio’s longtime manager, Jarez, told TMZ Wednesday afternoon that the rapper was visiting a friend’s home in Los Angeles Wednesday when he was found lying unconscious on the bathroom floor. Paramedics that were called to the house were unable to revive him, and he was pronounced dead on the scene. An official cause of death has not been determined.
Coolio was born Aug. 1, 1963 in Monessen, Penn., but he later moved to the hip-hop hub of Compton, Calif., where made connections in the L.A. scene and, after debuting in 1987 with the single “Whatcha Gonna Do?,” joined the group WC and the Maad Circle. Coolio officially went solo in 1994, signing to Tommy Boy Records and released his platinum-selling debut album, It Takes a Thief. That record spawned the single “Fantastic Voyage,” which went to No. 3 on the Billboard Hot 100 and was one of the biggest rap hits of the year.