Jahseh Dwayne Onfroy, aka rapper- XXXTentacion, was a 20-year-old American rapper and songwriter born in Plantation, Florida. XXXTentacion had his career start after the release of his song, “News/Flock” in June 2013. After he met Ski Mask the Slump God, (Stokeley Goulbourne), the two became friends and would freestyle rap together.
At first, Onfroy would record small bits of his music and upload the songs he may release or just keep to himself. He had joined the group Very Rare, and afterward became part of Members Only, where Ski Mask decided to join as well.
The Fall was the first official EP released on November 21, 2014. This was a collaborated effort between XXXTentacion and Ski Mask. After the release of EP Willy Wonka Was a Child Murderer, in 2016, Onfroy decided to quit his call center job because his musical career was taking off.
In 2017, XXXTentacion released the song “Look at Me,” which was on US Billboard Hot 100, peaking at number 34 on the chart. Also, the song was on Canadian Hot 100, in the top 40. “Look at Me” got more popularity because Drake, a Canadian rapper, was accused of styling a song that was similar.
XXXTentacion was accepted onto XXL’s 2017 Freshman Class for his unique freestyle, being able to rhyme a cappella; he was the 10th pick.
Revenge, his major-label debut album, was released on May 16,2017. On June 26, 2017, the collaborative mixtape Members Only, Vol. 3, was released.
17 was released on August 25, 2017, another major-label debut album. This album sold 86,000 units in just the first week. His diverse musical style and personal narratives made for positive reviews by critics. Seven of the songs from the album got listed on the Billboard Hot 100, which were: “Everybody Dies in Their Nightmares,” “Jocelyn Flores,” “Fuck Love,” “Revenge,” “Save Me,” “Carry On,” and “Depression&Obsession.”
Depression & Obsession- https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=yas2vpTPWWY
In late 2017, Onfroy was wanting to cancel his contract with Caroline, regarding the label Bad Vibes Forever, which was just for one album. He was contacted about the termination, saying he could not go through with this, since he was still signed. His EP, A Ghetto Christmas Carol was released in December 2017, which led him to go back to uploading music and collaborating with other artists.
In 2018, XXXTentacion was working on a collaboration Youtube channel, with a New York rapper, Joey Badass. On the Youtube channel, he displayed a caring side as he set up an album to be released only after his #HELPINGHANDCHALLENGE got over 1 million mentions on Instagram. XXX had a fundraiser, where he donated video game consoles, music instruments, and other items to foster children.
Afterward came the release of his album, ?, was on March 12, 2018. This album was one where XXXTentacion collaborated with artists PnB Rock, Joey Bada$$ and Travis Barker, and has 18 tracks in the album.
XXXTentacion was recently murdered on June 18, 2018. However, his music has touched his fans on a deeper level—XXX brought a unique musical style to hip-hop—often his rapping was paired with distortion and heavy guitar mixed in. He added in elements that were emo and rap mixed together. According to Rolling Stone Magazine, he leaves a huge musical footprint due to how his music impacted young fans and the popularity he received in his career.
Not only did his music style affect fans, but also what he rapped about in the lyrics. A lot of the songs dealt with mental health, which some may find as depressing, or maybe what some music-lovers call “emo.” With XXX’s words in the lyrics, this helped people find that even in their struggles with depression, there was hope to keep pushing on in their lives.
Although XXXTentacion had a controversial stance in hip-hop, in reference to assaulting fans and feuding with other artists, Spin labeled XXXTentacion as “Rap’s Most Controversial Man.” Also, XXL named him as “The Most Controversial Freshman Ever.”**
Now that you have read this, please feel free to look up his music on YouTube and SoundCloud. It’s a harsh world we live in, and XXXTentacion will be missed- RIP Onroy.