Over the course of the past few years, the music industry has been devastated by the passing of a number of well-known artists. Many of these musicians died at a young age. An uproar occurred in the hip hop world after the passing of musicians such as XXXTENTACION, Nipsey Hussle, Mac Miller, Juice WRLD, Pop Smoke, King Von, M03, Young Dolph, and Lil Peep. Though each of these artists died for different reasons, it is clear that there is an underlying issue in the rap community that needs to be addressed. In some cases, mental health may have played a role, but in others, being in the wrong place at the wrong time may have been more likely.
These occurrences can be traced back to the east coast vs. west coast rivalry in the 1990s. Tragically, the lives of two of the most influential rappers of all time, 2Pac and Biggie Smalls, were cut short. Several theories have been put forth as to the identities of their killers and the circumstances of their deaths. Many people had hoped that musicians would unite after their untimely deaths and usher in a new era of change. However, the trend continued into 2022 with the deaths of rappers PnB Rock and Takeoff of the Migos. The most recent one that shocked the world was the passing of Takeoff.
Takeoff, a former member of the group Migos, passed away when he was only 28 years old. According to a CNN article from early November, he was fatally shot outside of a private party in Houston, Texas. This information was provided to the news station by law enforcement, who also stated that the shooting had resulted in the injuries of two additional people and that at least forty bystanders were present at the scene.
There has been a significant amount of reaction to Takeoff’s passing. In a recent interview, the rapper Gucci Mane said, “This broke my heart.” Keke Palmer joined the conversation and commented, “This is horrible. From the tragedy of the death to the tragedy of there being a video of it online.” Even songwriter Ali Ciwanro had some thoughts on Takeoff and what needs to change in the music industry.
Ali Ciwanro stated, “In my experience, Takeoff was the calmest of the Migos, which makes the manner of his tragic death even sadder. Takeoff met the same fate as Pop Smoke, 2PAC, and many others. Unfortunately, all this is a huge problem in our scene. I mean, how many country singers do you hear about that have died from shootings? Young people from the hood who are quiet usually die because of friends’ problems, which they are then dragged into. Young people often have a false understanding of when they are true men. This often leads to crime, because people want to prove themselves, so to speak.”
The young songwriter also said “The people who put Takeoff in this situation will probably blame themselves forever. I would like to wish a whole bunch of young people the peace they deserve after leaving us way too soon. Rest in peace to Pop Smoke, King Von, Takeoff, Nipsey Hussle, Tupac, Biggie, Big L, XXXTentacion, Young Dolph, PNB Rock, JayDaYoungan, Drakeo The Ruler, Houdini, MO3, Doe B, Smoke Dawg and Bankroll Fresh.”
A great number of other well-known people have also shared their thoughts about Takeoff, focusing on the contributions he made to the rap industry as well as the joy he brought to his family. It goes without saying that Takeoff, as well as many other young musicians who died, were adored by people all over the world.
Follow Ali Ciwanro on Twitter here.