dw– Drakeo the Ruler, whose real name was Darrell Caldwell, was scheduled to perform at the Once Upon a Time festival in Los Angeles over the weekend, alongside hip-hop stars such as Snoop Dogg, 50 Cent and Ice Cube.
However, a violent dispute broke out backstage, during which US rapper Drakeo was stabbed. The 28-year-old was taken to a hospital where he succumbed to his injuries.
The festival was canceled, with fans and artist colleagues expressing their grief on social networks.
Snoop Dogg tweeted that he was in the dressing room when he learned of the stabbing, and promptly left the festival grounds. He offered condolences to Drakeo’s family and friends, and said he was “praying for peace in hip hop.
“Drakeo was the most original and innovative artist of his generation, a king without a crown or throne,” the rapper’s publicist Scott Jawson tweeted.
Rapping from prison
Caldwell emerged on the scene in 2015, with many of his recordings receiving critical acclaim.
He was arrested for a weapons offense in 2017, and a year later for murder in connection with the death of a 24-year-old man. He spent several years in prison on these charges.
In 2019, he was acquitted but then charged with criminal gang conspiracy. He agreed to a plea bargain and was released from prison in 2020.
While still behind bars, Drakeo released the album “Thank You for Using GTL,” a reference to the company that controls phone service in prison.
On the album, he raps to his producer via the prison phone line.
This article was originally written in German (with AP, AFP)