Ruff Ryder legend DMX passed away on Friday (April 9), causing a cascade of tribute posts to erupt on social media. From Public Enemy and Ice Cube to Missy Elliott and fellow Ruff Ryder Eve, the Hip Hop community flooded the timeline with sorrow.
But one particular tribute sparked concern. On Friday night, DJ Self posted a video of former Bad Boy Records affiliate Black Rob in a hospital bed looking gaunt and devoid of energy, worrying his fans.
“Pain is crazy, man,” he says in the clip. “It’s helping me out though. It’s making me realize I gotta lot to go on. I gotta lot to go on, man.” When someone off camera asks what he feels about DMX, he replies, “I feel for everything about X. X, one love, man. Big love to X, man. That’s all, man.”
DJ Self added in the caption, “Let keep our prayers up Black Rob !!! Get well man Please people out there take care of yourself BR was one of the greats Had NY on his back like Whoa!”
Black Rob is perhaps best known for his 2000 single “Whoa,” which peaked at No. 43 on the Billboard Hot 100, narrowly missing the Top 40. The now 52-year-old rapper suffered a mild stroke around 2015, likely from high blood pressure.
During a 2015 interview with Sway In The Morning, Black Rob talked about how the stroke affected his lifestyle choices.
“It ain’t no drugs. Lately, I had high blood pressure,” Rob explained at the time. “Being that I have that, that takes a lot out of a brother. Going on tour, you don’t even know. This is a real serious… I had a stroke. Yea, I had a stroke… and ummm, I got over that. “It’s been high blood pressure and trying to stay on top of this thing.
“Being on top, it’s hard. I got over it. After [the stroke], I was in the wind. I came out of it. It’s hard, but I can do it. I had to change my health regimen and how I eat,” he said at the time. “That’s it. I’m exercising and trying to keep it up. I don’t drink no more. That right there was telling me that I had to stop. Every time I come out, I drink. I just got tired of it. Now, I’m back. I’m working against that and trying to be the best thing I can be. It’s hard.”
As of publication time, there’s been no update on Black Rob’s medical condition. However, former Hot 97 Musical Director Karlie Hustle tweeted what a lot of people were thinking and suggested lack of health insurance in the music business is a major problem.
“The Black Rob hospital video is distressing, but I believe it’s important to normalize seeing sick people out in the open,” she wrote. “Sick people are people. The human experience is fragile. We should not disappear our ill brethren because we find discomfort in our own mortality.
“Sending healing energy to Black Rob. He has historically struggled with high blood pressure and has had a stroke in the past. He told Sway some years back that he was taking 10 pills a day to keep the condition under control. Of course he had no health insurance bc music biz. Smh.”
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