Photo Credit: Nipsey Hussle/instagram
Los Angeles rapper Nipsey Hussle was gunned down outside of his Marathon Clothing store in south L.A. yesterday by what’s believed to be area gang members. Over the last 24 hours, he’s been mourned by celebrities with Rihanna, Snoop Dogg, Ice Cube all sharing their stories on how he’s influenced them and the community as a whole. Just last month he told the L.A. Times he hoped he was a positive role model for underprivileged children. He created a STEM center and co-working space called Vector 90. He said he wanted the project to serve as a “bridge between Silicon Valley and the inner city,” and wanted to build more of them across the country.
“I just want to give back in an effective way,” he said in the L.A. Times interview. “I remember being young and really having the best intentions and not being met on my efforts… You see no structures or infrastructure built and you get a little frustrated… That’s a dangerous thing. I would like to prevent as many kids from feeling like that as possible. Because what follows is self-destructive.”
Pharrell chimed in saying, “You were about something positive and for your community in every chance you had to speak.” Actress Issa Rae said he “inspired me to invest and own in our communities,” and rapper J Cole said he admired “your career path and what you did for the neighborhood.” His label, Atlantic Records said he “was not only one of the greatest artists we worked with but an amazing father & leader in his community. One of the kindest & brightest stars in the universe, he was inspiring to all. We will miss him, his music & everything he stood for.”
Soon after his death, his projects have soared on Amazon and iTunes charts as much as 500%. His solo album Victory Lap became #1 on Amazon’s Movers & Shakers list moving up some 504,766% on the chart and is number 2 on the iTunes albums chart. His other projects also currently hold the second, third, and fourth spots.
The irony of it all is that he was supposed to meet with the Los Angeles police to discuss ways to stop gang violence today. He was also working on a documentary about the Honduran herbalist, biologist and self-proclaimed healer Dr. Sebi. It was a controversial project, and one many feel he was killed for trying to tell the story on because he claimed to have found the cure for HIV in a 1985 court trial and the documentary was supposed to have had evidence that the US government aided in Dr. Sebi’s death. And for those who question the validity of his claims of finding a cure, he himself followed his strict diet which was believed to have been a part of the cure, and was healthy in his 80s, but only became sick once he was in police custody. He was arrested around the time of his death for money laundering, carrying nearly $40,000 of cash on him, with no bail set. Considering his clients were wealthy that paid handsomely for his services, to include Michael Jackson, Lisa Lefteye Lopez, John Travolta, Eddie Murphy and others, it would make sense as to why he would have such a large amount of cash on him. While many have been concerned about the future of the project, Nick Cannon announced that he would like to finish the film.