Over the weekend, hip-hop legend DMX, born Earl Simmons, was remembered at a private funeral in New York, attended by his family and friends, while a larger memorial service was held at Barclays Center in Brooklyn.
Nation of Islam Minister Louis Farrakhan spoke at the four-hour memorial service and he had plenty of praise for DMX.
Farrakhan said he got to know DMX the same way many others did — through his music. “To all of you out there that like myself, I met him through his music but I really got to know him…by listening to his music,” Farrakhan said.
Addressing DMX’s children, Farrakhan asked, “Did you know that your dad’s life and love and pain and suffering shaped him to be a voice for our young people? And like young people all over the world, he suffered in his life, he had pain in his life, he had joy in his life, but he lived his life transparent.”
DMX had a long career from 1991 to his death. He charted all of his five No. 1 albums between 1998 and 2003, Forbes reported. Besides his numerous hits, DMX seemed to resonate with hip-hop heads and beyond. He was open about his tumultuous childhood, his hustle to live life to the fullest, and his drug struggles. Despite personal and professional setbacks, he seemed to always attempt a comeback.
People also celebrated along with him, especially at shows. Thousands upon thousands got swept away in the excitement of a DMX performance. DMX often finished concerts with prayers and walked off stage to the sound of “amens” from the crowd. His partnership with Def Jam Recordings in 1998 was considered one of the most successful in the music industry and helped him transition to Hollywood with starring roles in action films.
Farrakhan spoke of how relatable DMX was. “Many of us in public life, we’re one thing in the public and another thing in private. Not Earl Simmons. DMX was who he was and who he is and the reason he has affected the people in the hip-hop genre and human beings across the globe it is because he was genuine.”
Farrakhan said DMX’s life can help others facing hardships.
“God used his life to educate, to teach and show the world that you can come up the way he did but struggle and then overcome the struggle and reach beyond your pain and your suffering and yourself to affect the whole world.”
Some on Twitter expressed surprise at Farrakhan’s speech: “Did not have Louis Farrakhan preaching about God, Jesus and quoting scripture on my 2021 BINGO card.”
This sparked many replies to the contrary, such as, “He always preaches about GOD y’all not listening”
Others commented about the magnitude of Farrakhan’s participation. “If Louis Farrakhan pull up you know you Had to be SOMEBODY.”
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