Rapper Nipsey Hussle has reportedly died, after being shot outside his clothing shop in Los Angeles on Sunday 31 March. The city mayor's Crisis Response Team confirmed the tragic news on Sunday evening. Hussle was 33 years old.
A strong member of his community, Hussle (born Ermias Ashgedom) was known not just for his music – which included a series of acclaimed mixtapes, as well as the famous YG collaboration "FDT" (aka Fuck Donald Trump) – but also his investments in the people and businesses of the Crenshaw area of LA.
Hussle had just purchased the L-shaped plaza where his clothing store, Marathon Clothing, was located. In February 2019, Forbes reported that self-made millionaire Hussle and his business partner had purchased the lot for "a couple million" and had plans to turn it into a six-storey residential building, with a revamped shopping area below. It was the next step in Hussle's entrepreneurial career, which at one point saw him sell a mixtape for $100 (Jay Z bought 100 copies).
His debut album Victory Lap received a nomination for best rap album at this year's Grammy Awards, sliding in next to records from Cardi B, Mac Miller, Pusha T and Travis Scott. Drake, who won a Grammy that evening and collaborated with Hussle in 2009, took to Instagram with a tribute. "My whole energy is just at a low right now hearing this. We just linked for the first time in years and said we were gonna do a new song this summer cause it had been too long," he wrote. "You were having the best run and I was so happy watching from distance fam nobody ever talks down on your name you were a real one to your people and to the rest of us."
The Canadian rapper was one of many global stars to react to Nipsey Hussle's death, proof of his impact close to home and far beyond. While on stage in Buenos Aires, fellow south Los Angeles resident Kendrick Lamar led a moment of silence, describing Nipsey Hussle as "our brother, our warrior, our soldier."
Rihanna, J Cole, Meek Mill and Chance The Rapper are among many other names to pay their respects. Hussle was one of three victims in the shooting and the LAPD are currently looking for a suspect. The city's mayor took to Twitter to condemn the violence, stating: "Our hearts are with the loved ones of Nipsey Hussle and everyone touched by this awful tragedy. LA is hurt deeply each time a young life is lost to senseless gun violence."
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This article originally appeared on Noisey UK.