DMX was an iconic East Coast rapper during the late-1990s and early-2000s who made a seismic impact on the culture when he first ascended under Ruff Ryders Entertainment.
The emcee (real name Earl Simmons) had a slow but exciting rise to fame and captured fans with his aggressive style and provocative lyrics. He was an unparalleled force in hip-hop during his heyday, and with his menacing, gravelly delivery and unmatched energy, the Yonkers artist most certainly turned heads when he first arose.
Akin to Biggie Smalls, the Yonkers native got his first break by being featured in The Source magazine’s Unsigned Hype column in 1991. After this exposure, Simmons signed with Ruff Ryders Entertainment, an artist management firm and quickly blew up.
DMX became a highly sought-after lyricist following the release of his debut project, It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot, in 1998, and, as such, Simmons featured on many tracks throughout his career. Some of DMX’s features have been iconic, from his guest verse on Jay-Z’s ‘Money, Cash, Hoes’ to his chilling rhymes on Busta Rhymes 2006 ‘Touch It (remix).’
Although DMX’s musical output began to wane in the late 2000s and early-2010s, he was still seen as a legend, and it was a massive shock when, in April of 2021, rap fans received news that Simmons had died following a drug-induced heart attack that left him in a coma for almost a week.
Vigils and ceremonies were held for the rapper, and his posthumous body of work EXODUS 1:7 debuted within the top ten of the Billboard 200. However, the emcee had recorded a verse before his death.
On 21st December 2021, Connecticut lyricist Chris Webby released his album Still Wednesday through EightyHD, with its lead single being ‘We Up’ featuring DMX. Having recorded the album throughout 2020 into early 2021, this verse for Webby was the last one that DMX would record in his lifetime. You can hear the song below.