How Many Rappers Must Get Shot Before People Stop Shooting Rappers?

Last week an up-and-coming rapper known as Young Dolph was shot multiple times in Los Angeles. It appears that he will live, which portends wonderful things for his musical career.

Young Dolph—born Adolph Thornton, Jr. to parents who either didn’t know or didn’t care that Hitler didn’t spell his name that way—already enjoyed a modestly successful music career. His most recent album—Bulletproof—reached #36 on the Billboard charts earlier this year. It featured the song “100 Shots,” his musical homage to an incident this past February where he was ambushed in a gun battle where at least 100 bullets were allegedly fired.

Now after being shot again—and surviving again—the sky’s the limit for this young musical performer.

Police arrested 43-year-old Corey McClendon in connection with the shooting. McClendon is an alleged associate of Young Dolph’s rival Memphis rapper Yo Gotti, who was arrested along with McClendon in 2010 for a shooting incident in a parking lot. The case fell apart due to a lack of willing witnesses.

If Young Dolph survives this latest shooting as it appears he will, this will be all the evidence everyone needs that the angels smile more brightly on him than they did on Yung Mazi, an Atlanta rapper who’d boasted that “God made me bulletproof” after he survived eleven shootings. But it was the twelfth shooting that proved to be Yung Mazi’s undoing.

To all young aspiring rappers out there who aspire to be shot in order to boost your career, please take note: It’s quite possible that being shot and killed will be the best thing to ever happen to your career; the problem, though, is that you won’t be around to enjoy it. The key is to survive the multiple attempts on your life.

“What other musical genre can boast such a robust death toll?”

At the bright and bushy-tailed age of 12, a diminutive black boy named Dwayne Michael Carter, Jr. accidentally shot himself with a .44-caliber gun. He survived the shooting and later called himself Lil Wayne, whose net worth is now $150 million.

In May of 2000, Curtis James Jackson III was shot nine times in front of his grandmother’s house in Queens. He survived the shooting and became famous worldwide as 50 Cent, who despite his name now has an estimated worth of around $15 million.

In late October 2005, a rapper named Cam’ron took three bullets in an attempted DC carjacking. When a reporter asked him for a quote as he was leaving Howard University Hospital, Cam’ron quipped, “I got shot three times and my album comes out November 22.”

Staten Island-based hip-hop super-group Wu-Tang Clan boasted two separate rappers who’d been shot—Ghostface Killah, who’d eaten lead in the neck and arm in the early 90s, and Ol’ Dirty Bastard, who’d been plugged in the gut with a bullet in a 1994 scrap with another rapper.

The most famous hip-hop shooting murders—both of which remain unsolved—are those of Tupac Shakur and Notorious B.I.G. As the most visible representatives of a much-hyped music/money/gang-related blood feud between West Coast (Shakur) and East Coast (B.I.G.) hip-hop contingents in the 1990s, the two superstars were gunned down in the streets of Las Vegas and Los Angeles within six months of one another in late 1996 and early 1997. In both cases, being shot to death proved a boon for the musicians’ careers—twenty years later, their estates continue releasing their music and raking in millions.

Being shot is such a shot in the arm for the aspirant hip-hop mogul, a rapper named Gravy got shot in the buttocks outside a Brooklyn radio station in April 2006 before heading right into the studio for an interview. As it turns out, Gravy had one of his friends shoot him because he knew it would be good publicity.

Wikipedia’s page for “murdered rappers” currently has 31 entries. This includes Houston rapper Big Hawk, fatally gunned down eight years after the tragic murder of his brother, another rapper named Fat Pat. There will undoubtedly be more—possibly by the time you read this! What other musical genre can boast such a robust death toll?

For some, the blinding lust for fame, money, and power is so all-consuming, they can’t sit around and wait for someone to shoot them. Instead, they take matters into their own hands. Such was the case in 1998 when aspiring rapper Ray Jasper stabbed a Texas music producer to death. Jasper was executed in 2014.

Also in 2014—and in a case that seems much more clear-cut than the dubious narrative we’ve been fed about a white supremacist purposely ramming his car into a woman in Charlottesville and killing her this past summer—an aspiring rapper named Rashad Charjuan Owens—aka “KillingAllBeatz”—purposely plowed his car into music fans in Austin, killing four and wounding 23.

Yet again in 2014, an aspiring female rapper whose stage name was Yo Skyy—who’d bragged of being the “Grim Reaper” in her lyrics—stabbed a gas station attendant to death in northern Georgia.


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