DMX came into the rap world with a Ruff Ryder bandana tied tight around his head, and lung ready to burst.
There’s nothing that drags on a Hip Hop fan’s heart more than seeing a legend fall on hard times. DMX has openly struggled with drug addiction for quite some time now, and as of last night was found practically lifeless in a Yonkers parking lot. However depressing this news is, let it not overshadow the career of one of Hip Hop’s loudest souls.
X came into the culture at a moment of transition. Lyrical and conscious Hip Hop was packing its bags while new artists hungrily chased after the legs of radio appeal. Instead of tipping to either side, DMX brought in a sound that was so unashamedly his own. X didn’t lean too heavily on lyricism, but he also didn’t write to appeal to others, his style and bravado was found in the energy and passion that he threw into his records. It’s quite possible that DMX helped establish a new style of street rap, building off of the style of someone like ODB.
While that energy certainly carried more rambunctious records like “Ruff Ryders Anthem”, it also helped establish emotion in tracks like “Slippin'”. X was always filled with rage, but he managed to channel it into various facets of Hip Hop. He may have lost that outlet for now, but I’m praying that he directs it towards his demons and comes out of this a stronger artist and a stronger man.
art by your homie, Arthur Banach
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