Coolio - Gangsta's Paradise - The creator of this great 1995 theme passed away last 28th of Nov 2022
"Dangerous Minds" took Coolio's "Gangsta Paradise" theme to the top of several countries. Who wouldn't turn up the volume on the radio or the television when listening to this excellent RAP! I don't think there will be anyone from that generation who wouldn't, regardless of what genre of music they liked!
Artis Leon Ivey Jr. (August 1, 1963 - September 28, 2022), known professionally as Coolio, was an American rapper. First rising to fame as a member of the gangster rap group WC and the Maad Circle, Coolio achieved success as a solo artist in the mid-1990s with his albums It Takes a Thief (1994), Gangsta's Paradise (1995), and My Soul (1997). He is best known for his 1995 hit single "Gangsta's Paradise", as well as other singles "Fantastic Voyage" (1994), "1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin' New)" (1996), and "C U When U Get There" (1997).
Beginning in 1996, Coolio released albums independently, and provided the opening track "Aw, Here It Goes!" for the 1996 Nickelodeon television series Kenan & Kel. He created the web series Cookin' with Coolio and released a cookbook.
Artis Leon Ivey Jr. was born August 1, 1963, in Monessen, Pennsylvania. He was raised mostly in Compton, California. After attending Compton Community College, he worked in jobs such as volunteer firefighting and security at Los Angeles International Airport, before becoming a rapper.
Coolio recorded his first single in 1987, titled "Whatcha Gonna Do?". He also recorded "What Makes You Dance (Force Groove)" with Nu-Skool in 1988. Coolio made connections in the L.A. rap scene, and in 1991, ended up joining the group WC and the Maad Circle, led by rapper WC. He is a credited co-contributor on the group's debut album Ain't a Damn Thang Changed, including on the single "Dress Code".
In 1995, Coolio released "Gangsta's Paradise", featuring R&B singer L.V., for the film Dangerous Minds. It became one of the most successful rap songs of all time, topping on the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks. It was the No. 1 single of 1995 in the United States for all genres and was a global hit topping the United Kingdom, Ireland, France, Germany, Italy, Sweden, Austria, Netherlands, Norway, Switzerland, Australia, and New Zealand charts. "Gangsta's Paradise" was the second-best-selling single of 1995 in the U.K. The song also created a controversy when Coolio claimed that comedy musician "Weird Al" Yankovic had not asked for permission to make his parody of "Gangsta's Paradise", titled "Amish Paradise". At the 1996 Grammy Awards, the song won Coolio a Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance.
Originally "Gangsta's Paradise" was not meant to be included on one of Coolio's studio albums, but its success led to Coolio not only putting it on his next album but also making it the title track. The title track interpolates the chorus and music of the song "Pastime Paradise" by Stevie Wonder, which was recorded nearly 20 years earlier on Wonder's album Songs in the Key of Life. The album Gangsta's Paradise was released in 1995 and was certified two times Platinum by the RIAA and sold more than two million copies globally.
The album contains two other major hits in "1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin' New)" and "Too Hot" with J. T. Taylor of Kool & the Gang doing the chorus. Despite no longer being an official member of the group, Coolio appears on the second WC and the Maad Circle album Curb Servin' on the song "In a Twist". In 1996, Coolio had another top 40 hit with the song "It's All the Way Live (Now)" from the soundtrack to the movie Eddie. He is also featured on the song "Hit 'em High" from the soundtrack to the 1996 film Space Jam with B-Real, Method Man, LL Cool J, and Busta Rhymes.
In 2014, the band Falling in Reverse did a cover of "Gangsta's Paradise" for Punk Goes 90s Vol. 2, with Coolio making a cameo in the music video.
Coolio had six children. He married Josefa Salinas in 1996, and they divorced in 2000.
Coolio was the running mate for pornographic actress Cherie DeVille's Democratic presidential run in 2020.
While at a friend's Los Angeles house on September 28, 2022, Coolio was discovered unresponsive on a bathroom floor. He was pronounced dead by first responders. He was 59 years old at the time of his death. Police have opened an investigation into his death, though foul play is not suspected, and Coolio's manager stated he appeared to have suffered a cardiac arrest.
Celebrities including Ice Cube, Snoop Dogg, "Weird Al" Yankovic, Martin Lawrence, Michelle Pfeiffer, Kenan Thompson, LL Cool J, Melissa Joan Hart, MC Hammer, Bret Michaels, Denzel Curry, and LeBron James paid tribute to Coolio following his death.
Mgmeia wants to pay tribute to a great man of RAP music friends and family, R.I.P. Coolio, you will never be forgotten.