Celebrities React to Rapper Coolio’s Death

The entertainment industry mourns the loss of rapper Coolio.

The Grammy-winning “Gangsta’s Paradise” rapper, born Artis Leon Ivey Jr., died Wednesday at the age of 59, his manager Jarez Posey confirmed to PEOPLE. His cause of death has not been made public.

Coolio’s fellow performers and those in Hollywood paid tribute to him on social media shortly after news of his death was announced.

Weird Al Yankovic, who created the infamous parody “Amish Paradise” inspired by Coolio’s song, kept his message short and sweet. He posted a picture of him and Coolio embracing and wrote“RIP Coolio”

Dangerous Settings star Michelle Pfeifferwho starred in Coolio’s music video for “Gangsta’s Paradise” — the lead single from the 1995 film’s soundtrack — was one of the first to mourn the loss of the artist.

“Heartbreaking to hear of the passing of the gifted artist @coolio,” she captioned a clip of the video “Gangsta’s Paradise”. “A life cut totally too short.”

She added: “As some of you may know, I was lucky enough to work with him on Dangerous Minds in 1995. He won a Grammy for his brilliant song on the soundtrack – which I think was why our film had so much success.”

“I remember he was nothing but merciful. 30 years later I still get chills when I hear the song. Sending love and light to his family. Rest in Power, Artis Leon Ivey Jr. ❤️.”

Kenan Thompson was shocked at the news of his passing. Coolio provided the opening track, titled “Aw, Here It Goes!,” for the Nickelodeon television series Kenan & Kel.

“Wait, now Coolio!!!” Thompson wrote in his Instagram story.

He later reposted a tribute from Questlove, adding, “Damn homie!!! Rest in Power!!!”

Kenan Thompson/Instagram

Ice Cube praised Coolio, tweet“This is sad news. I am witnessing this man’s rut ​​to the top of the industry. Rest in peace @Coolio.”

“God Bless The Dead.”, rapper Killer Mike wrote in response to the loss.

Snoop Dogg also greeted the rapper with a vintage photo of them posing together on the set of the video for their “Gangsta Walk” collaboration.

“Gangstas paradise. RIP 🕊 ♿️🚾. @coolio,” he wrote.

Melissa Joan Hart also posted a photo of her and Coolio from a time he appeared on Sabrina the teenage witch.

She captioned the image: “I had the great honor of working and playing with @coolio a few times and he was always up for a chat, a complete gentleman and loads of fun to deal with. What a loss! Rest in peace!”

Actor and comedian Martin Lawrence wrote, “My deepest condolences and prayers go out to the family of… @Coolio #rip” via Twitter.

Coolio’s fellow rapper LL Cool J also shared a post on social media that: is reading“Rest in power my brother. @Coolio Love & Respect”

LeBron James responded to the news in his Instagram story, typing the rapper’s name with several dove emojis.

He later wrote: “Exactly where he is now! GANGSTA’S PARADISE”

lebron james/Instagram

Questlove, one of the first to pay tribute to the musician, posted a throwback image via Instagram of Coolio showing his iconic braids. “Peaceful Journey Brother. #Coolio,” he wrote.

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Posey confirmed that Coolio passed away on Wednesday.

According to TMZ, which first reported the news, Posey said the late musician was visiting a friend and going to the bathroom. When he did not come out, the friend called his name, but he did not answer. They then found Coolio on the ground.

The friend called for help, according to the outlet, and when emergency personnel arrived, Coolio was pronounced dead.

Gilbert Carrasquillo / GC Images

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Born in Monessen, Pennsylvania, in 1963, Coolio later moved to Compton, California, where he attended Compton Community College before becoming a rapper.

Coolio released the hit single “Gangsta’s Paradise” with singer LV in 1995. The song topped the Billboard Hot 100 for three weeks and won the Grammy Award for Best Rap Solo Performance at the 1996 Grammys.

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