XXXTentacion

XXXTentacion
Mugshot of XXXTentacion in 2016
XXXTentacion's mugshot in October 2016, later used as the cover of the single "Look at Me!"
BornJahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy
(1998-01-23)January 23, 1998
Plantation, Florida, U.S.
DiedJune 18, 2018(2018-06-18) (aged 20)
Deerfield Beach, Florida, U.S.
Cause of deathGunshot wound
Resting placeGardens of Boca Raton Memorial Park
Boca Raton, Florida[1]
Other names
  • X
  • XXX
  • Triple X
  • Young Dagger Dick[2]
Occupation
  • Rapper
  • singer
  • songwriter
Musical career
Genres
Instruments
  • Vocals
  • guitar
  • piano
  • drums
Years active2013–2018
Labels
Associated acts
Websitexxxtentacion.com

Jahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy (January 23, 1998 – June 18, 2018), known professionally as XXXTentacion (/ˌɛksˌɛksˌɛksˌtɛntɒˈsjn/; often referred to colloquially as simply X),[14] was an American rapper, singer and songwriter. A controversial figure within the hip-hop industry, Onfroy has been considered to have left behind "a huge musical footprint" due to his impact on his young fanbase and his popularity during his short career.[15]

Born in Plantation, Florida, Onfroy spent most of his childhood in Lauderhill. He began writing music after being released from a juvenile detention center[16] and released his first song on SoundCloud in June 2013, titled "News/Flock".[17] He was a popular figure in SoundCloud rap, a trap scene that takes elements of lo-fi music and harsh 808s.[18][19][20] Onfroy rose to fame with the release of his song "Look at Me". He released his debut album, 17, on August 25, 2017. The album debuted at number 2 on the US Billboard 200, selling 86,000 album-equivalent units the first week. The album received a positive response from critics, some of which lauded the album for its personal narratives and diverse musical style. On August 15, 2018, the album was certified Platinum by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA). Onfroy's second album, ?, was released on March 16, 2018. It debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, with its singles "Sad!", "Changes" and "Moonlight" all reaching the top 20 of the Billboard Hot 100. The album was certified "Platinum" by the Recording Industry Association of America (RIAA) on August 7, 2018.

In the week following his death, Onfroy's highest-charting single, "Sad!", went from 52nd to 1st on the Billboard Hot 100, making him the first artist to top the Hot 100 posthumously in a lead role since The Notorious B.I.G., with "Mo Money Mo Problems", in 1997. On September 27, 2018, Kanye West announced Onfroy will be a featured artist on his ninth studio album, Yandhi.[21] The same day, it was reported that Onfroy will also be a featured artist on Lil Wayne's twelfth album, Tha Carter V, where he was featured on the song "Don't Cry".[22] A few months after his death, he won the Best New Hip Hop Artist at the BET Hip Hop Awards and won the Favourite Album-Soul/R&B for 17 at the American Music Awards.[23][24] Onfroy's third and first posthumous studio album, Skins, is due to be released in December 2018.[25]

On June 18, 2018, Onfroy was fatally shot at the age of 20, in a robbery at a motorcycle dealership in Deerfield Beach, Florida.[26] The attackers fled the scene in an SUV after stealing a bag from Onfroy; all were arrested and are awaiting trial for the murder.[27]

Early life[]

Jahseh Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy was born on January 23, 1998, in Plantation, Florida, to Jamaican parents, Dwayne Ricardo Onfroy and Cleopatra Bernard.[28] He had three siblings with one being half, shared paternally.[29] Onfroy was mainly raised by his grandmother Collette Jones[30]—due to his mother's financial situation[31]—in Pompano Beach, Florida, and Lauderhill, Florida. When Onfroy was six years old, he tried to stab a man attempting to attack his mother[31] and was eventually put into a youth program before being forced[clarification needed] to live with his grandmother.[28]

Onfroy's interest in music initially started after his aunt persuaded him to begin attending school choir and later church choir. He was soon kicked out of the school choir after attacking another student.[32] Onfroy attended Margate Middle School[30] from which he was later expelled after a series of physical altercations. He was subsequently enrolled into Sheridan House Family Ministries by his mother for over six months.[32] Onfroy began to listen to nu-metal, hard rock and rap during his time at Sheridan House Family Ministries, which led to him to learn the piano and guitar.[31]

Onfroy attended Piper High School until he dropped out in the tenth grade.[33] He described himself as a "misfit" during that time, citing how quiet he was despite being popular and regularly involved in physical confrontations.[34] Onfroy was not the athletic type and said that he was insecure and depressed during his time in high school.[28]

Career[]

Career beginnings and "Look at Me" (2013–16)[]

Onfroy's career as a music artist began in June 2013 after the release of his song "News/Flock".[35] While in juvenile detention for gun possession charges, Onfroy met Stokeley Clevon Goulbourne,[36] another artist known as Ski Mask the Slump God. During their time together, Onfroy and Goulbourne became good friends and began freestyling.[37] Recalling his time in detention, Onfroy said that he was respectful to the officers and staff and used to protect people from other inmates, including a homosexual cellmate, whom Onfroy later attacked for allegedly staring at him while he was changing clothes.[32][38]

That same year, following his release from a juvenile detention center, Onfroy and Goulbourne met up again under the belief they were going to commit a string of home invasions for monetary gain[39] though Onfroy eventually bought a Blue Snowball microphone and began recording music,[37] which convinced Stokeley to do the same. After Onfroy adopted the moniker XXXTentacion, he uploaded his first official song, called "Vice City", on SoundCloud.[40] Speaking on his decision to abandon a life of crime for music, Onfroy said that he felt like music was a better outlet for his feelings and then-girlfriend Geneva Ayala was someone who helped him realize that.[28] He would then continue uploading small snippets of his songs that he would either soon release or keep unreleased. Onfroy eventually joined Ski Mask the Slump God's group Very Rare, before breaking off and starting the Members Only collective, which Ski Mask then also joined.[41] The word "tentación" in his stage name is the Spanish word for "temptation".[42][43]

Onfroy released his first official extended play (EP), called The Fall, on November 21, 2014.[44] Onfroy released one collaboration album with Ski Mask the Slump God, called Members Only Vol. 1, before releasing Members Only Vol. 2 in 2015 with several members of the growing Members Only collective. In 2016, he released the EP Willy Wonka Was a Child Murderer,[45] with music heavily inspired by heavy metal and indie music. In 2016, Onfroy quit his job as a call center operator due to his growing music career[33] and moved in with rapper Denzel Curry.[46]

In July 2016, Onfroy was arrested and charged with robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.[47][48] After posting $10,000 bail, Onfroy continued to work on his debut independent album, Bad Vibes Forever, which had a slated October 31, 2016, release date.[28] The album missed the release date and was delayed due to Onfroy being arrested in early October on charges of false imprisonment, witness tampering and aggravated battery of his pregnant girlfriend.[49]

Release from prison, Revenge, 17, and A Ghetto Christmas Carol (2017)[]

In 2017 "Look at Me" gained traction, peaked at number 34 on US Billboard Hot 100 and the top 40 of the Canadian Hot 100.[50] The single helped him gain more popularity due to accusations of Canadian rapper Drake using a similar rap flow in his song "KMT".[51][52] During his jail stint, Onfroy signed a deal to be managed by Soloman Sobande (who would remain his manager until his death) and despite Onfroy being in jail during "Look at Me"'s initial breakthrough, major-label scouts began offering six-figure contracts and Onfroy eventually signed for Empire Distribution for lower royalty rate, full creative control and a smaller upfront payment.[53][54]

After his release from prison on April 18, 2017, he released three more songs on SoundCloud.[55] In an interview with WMIB, Onfroy announced that he was working on the studio albums Bad Vibes and 17; as well as a mixtape, I Need Jesus.[56][57] In an interview three days after his release from prison, Onfroy said to XXL, "I got this really, really, really good album called 17. That's more of an alternative, R&B sound—then I've got this mixtape called I Need Jesus, which is mainly rap and the underground sound I did."[58]

Onfroy announced his first nationwide tour on April 28, 2017. The tour, titled "The Revenge Tour", had 26 tour dates overall and generated much media coverage, included that of a rapper being assaulted,[59] Onfroy being knocked out after an altercation on stage,[60] an audience member being stabbed,[61] Onfroy being thrown into a barricade by security,[62] and Onfroy punching a fan.[63] He announced the cancellation of the rest of the tour dates due to his cousin being shot on June 24, 2017,[64] though the final tour date in Broward County, Florida, still went ahead[65] and was later streamed on the watchthemusic (WAV) app.[66]

Onfroy was named as the tenth pick on XXL's "2017 Freshman Class".[67]

Onfroy released his debut commercial project, called Revenge, on May 16, 2017. The mixtape consists of eight previously released songs.[68] The collaborative mixtape, Members Only, Vol. 3, with Members Only, was released on June 26, 2017.

Onfroy's first opener for a major act happened when rapper DRAM brought Onfroy out at a concert in the Staples Centre during Kendrick Lamar's DAMN. Tour.[69]

He released his debut album, 17, on August 25, 2017.[70] The album debuted at number 2 on the US Billboard 200, selling 86,000 album-equivalent units first week.[71] The album received a positive response from critics, some of whom lauded the album for its personal narratives and diverse musical style.[72] On September 3, 2017, Onfroy announced that Bad Vibes Forever, his second album, was still in production.[73] 17 gave Onfroy's seven songs—"Jocelyn Flores", "Revenge", "Fuck Love", "Everybody Dies in Their Nightmares", "Depression & Obsession", "Save Me" and "Carry On"—that debuted in the Billboard Hot 100 at number 31, 77, 41, 54, 91, 94 and 95, respectively. Jocelyn Flores became XXXTentacion's highest-charting song since "Look at Me", which peaked it at 34.[74] Onfroy then had his ninth song to chart on the Billboard Hot 100, in turn with his being featured on Kodak Black's song "Roll in Peace", taken from Project Baby 2. The song debuted at 52 and peaked at 31, matching "Jocelyn Flores."[75]

On September 12, 2017, Onfroy released his first official music video for his 2016 song "Look at Me", as well as sharing a music video with his 2015 song "Riot".[76] The song generated controversy hours after being posted due to the video depicting a white child being hanged by Onfroy, as another black child observed. The music video was removed from YouTube months later.[77] Onfroy's label, Bad Vibes Forever, signed a distribution deal with Capitol Music Group, subsidiary Caroline, on October 19, 2017. The deal, reportedly worth $6 million, was for one album only.[78] Shortly afterwards on October 25, 2017, Onfroy announced he was terminating his contract with Caroline[79] despite a representative confirming he was still signed.[80] Two days later, he announced that he was retiring due to negativity and backlash[81] though some publications noted that Onfroy made similar statements before and not followed through.[82] On October 30, 2017, Onfroy announced that he would make music again if fellow Broward rapper and "former best friend," Ski Mask the Slump God, was his friend again.[83] Later, Onfroy answered a fan's question on Instagram Live about his retirement, saying, "Am I quitting? Yes, I'm quitting—I don't know for how long, but I'm just not going to make music right now."[84]

Onfroy previewed new music on November 2, 2017, signaling a return to making music.[85] Onfroy announced a new album titled Bad Vibes Forever on November 17, 2017,[86] speaking on the album, Onfroy said "It will be a mix of genres you have seen me dabble with, if you are not a fan of me this is not an album for you, it is for core fans only".[87] The album title shares its name with his label.[88] On December 11, 2017, Onfroy released the A Ghetto Christmas Carol EP on SoundCloud.[89] A day before his hearing for witness tampering charges, Onfroy announced that he was preparing three albums to be ready for 2018,[90] and after being released on house arrest, he announced the titles of all three albums, Skins, Bad Vibes Forever and ?.[91]

YouTube channel and ? album (2018)[]

Onfroy began to use his long-time YouTube channel "xxxtentacion", previously used to upload music, to upload gaming videos and vlogs.[92] The channel has 13 million subscribers and 2.6 billion total views as of October 2018.[93] On January 22, 2018, Onfroy announced on Instagram that he and New York rapper Joey Badass had been creating a project together[94] and the two released a freestyle to the song "King's Dead" on SoundCloud on March 9, 2018, in preparation for the collaboration.[95] The "xxxtentacion" YouTube channel uploaded the video "#THEHELPINGHANDCHALLENGE" on the same day. The video included Onfroy donating musical instruments, video game consoles, and other gifts to a foster home.[96] Shortly afterwards, Onfroy declared his album had finished and he was preparing to release it but would only do so after the hashtag #HELPINGHANDCHALLENGE reached one million mentions on Instagram.[97]

Onfroy released his first single of 2018 on February 2, titled "Shining Like the Northstar".[98] He was also featured on long-time collaborator and producer Ronny J's track "Banded Up".[99] Onfroy released the song "Hope" on his SoundCloud account on February 21, 2018, dedicated to the victims of the Stoneman Douglas High School shooting, which had occurred in Parkland, several miles north of Onfroy's native Plantation.[100] Onfroy announced that he was releasing two songs at midnight on March 2, 2018, both the first singles for his upcoming album ?.[101] The lead single for ?, "Sad!", was released several hours later[102] alongside "Changes", which features fellow 2017 XXL "Freshman" PnB Rock.[103] "Sad!" debuted at number 17, becoming his highest-charting song in the United States, and eventually peaked at number 1 after Onfroy's death before releasing its official music video on June 28.[104] "Moonlight" and "Hope" also charted after his death, peaking at number 13 and 70.

Onfroy announced the release date for his second studio album, ?, on March 12, 2018.[105] He shared the 18 track track-list with features from Joey Bada$$, Travis Barker and PnB Rock.[106] ? was released on March 16, 2018.[107] ? debuted at number one on the Billboard 200, becoming Onfroy's first number one in the country, losing out with his debut album 17 due to Lil Uzi Vert's Luv Is Rage 2.[108] Shortly following the release of ?, Onfroy signed a new album deal with Empire Distribution for his third solo album worth ten million dollars.[53]

Posthumous releases[]

On June 21, 2018, the first posthumous song featuring Onfroy was released, "Ghost Busters", with Trippie Redd featuring Quavo and Ski Mask the Slump God, and was uploaded on Trippie Redd's SoundCloud.[109] XXL released a series of freestyles that Onfroy performed as a part of his "2017 Freshman Cypher".[110] Ugly God released a song titled "Tear Drop" on June 22, 2018, which featured Onfroy's aforementioned unreleased cypher verses, as a tribute to Onfroy.[111]

On August 31, 2018, Houston rapper Sauce Walka released his Drip God mixtape which featured a collaboration with Onfroy titled "Voss" produced by Carnage.[112]

On August 17, 2018, iLoveMakonnen announced a collaboration between Lil Peep and Onfroy titled "Falling Down". A reworking of "Sunlight on Your Skin" made by Makonnen and Peep, the new version features verses by Onfroy that he recorded after Peep's death to pay tribute to Peep.[113] The single was officially released on September 19, 2018.[114]

On September 27, 2018, Kanye West announced Onfroy will be a featured artist on his ninth studio album, Yandhi.[21] The same day, it was reported that Onfroy will also be a featured artist on Lil Wayne's twelfth album, Tha Carter V, which was released the next day. Onfroy was featured on the song, "Don't Cry".[22]

On October 22, 2018, Onfroy's manager Soloman Sobande stated in an interview with Billboard that Onfroy's third album would come "very soon" and that he had more than two album's worth of material.[115] On October 25, 2018, EDM DJ-producer Skrillex released the song "Arms Around You", which is a collaboration he made with Onfroy, Lil Pump, Maluma and Swae Lee.[116] The track was originally recorded in 2017 with Rio Santana, who appeared on Onfroy's ? album, but was later changed to add bigger star co-features.[117] Specifically, Lil Pump contacted Onfroy's mother to ask to use Onfroy's vocals on the track as a tribute.[118] Following the release of "Arms Around You", the song's producer, Mally Mall was interviewed by Power 106's The Cruz Show where he confirmed that nine Onfroy song's were going to be released soon with one having a Rihanna feature and another having a Weeknd feature.[119]

On November 8, 2018, Onfroy's first posthumous album and his third studio album Skins release date was announced, being given a December 8, 2018 release date.[120] The first single from Skins, titled "Bad", was released on November 9, 2018.[121]

Death[]

Memorial of XXXTentacion outside the motorcycle dealership where he died in Deerfield Beach, Florida

On June 18, 2018, Onfroy was leaving the Riva Motorsports motorcycle dealership in Deerfield Beach, Florida and at approximately 3:55 p.m., Onfroy was blocked from exiting the car park by a black Dodge Journey SUV. Two armed men exited the SUV and approached the rapper while he was sitting in the driver's seat. A brief struggle occurred, and the armed men reached inside Onfroy's vehicle, stole a small Louis Vuitton bag, and shot Onfroy multiple times. The shooters fled the scene in their black Dodge Journey SUV and Onfroy was transported by paramedics to the nearby Broward Health North hospital in Deerfield Beach, where he was pronounced dead.[122] Onfroy's death was announced by the Broward County Sheriff's Office at approximately 5:30 p.m.[123][124]

Suspect Dedrick Devonshay Williams of Pompano Beach was arrested 2 days after the shooting, shortly before 7 p.m. Held in the Broward County jail, he is charged with first degree murder without premation.[125] In the weeks following the event, three different people were arrested for their actions involved with the event, including trigger man Michael Boatwright.[126]

In his will, Onfroy named his mother Cleopatra and brother Aiden as the sole beneficiaries of his estate. Onfroy's future child, that his girlfriend at the time of his death was pregnant with, was not named in the will as the will was written before the pregnancy.[127]

Funeral[]

An open casket service for Onfroy took place at the BB&T Center in Sunrise, Florida on June 27 where fans were allowed to pay their respects.[128][129] His private funeral took place on June 28 where rappers Lil Uzi Vert and Lil Yachty and singer Erykah Badu were among the attendees.[130] He was entombed in a mausoleum at Gardens of Boca Raton Memorial Park, Boca Raton, Florida.[1][131]

Legacy[]

Mausoleum of XXXTentacion
XXXTentacion's tombstone at Gardens of Boca Raton Memorial Park in Boca Raton, Florida

Well known for his "depressing, and at times devastating"[132] music that brought attention to mental health,[133] Onfroy employed styles and techniques that were unconventional in hip hop during his career, such as distortion[134] and heavy guitar-backed instrumentals drawing inspiration from third-wave emo.[135] This influenced artists such as Lil Pump, Trippie Redd, Ski Mask the Slump God, Smokepurpp and 6ix9ine with the grungy vocals and lo-fi mixing of his early career.[136] He was also cred with giving artists their first taste of fame and helping them with their careers through features and co-signs.[137][138][139] Onfroy left behind what Rolling Stone called "a huge musical footprint" due to his impact on his young fanbase and his popularity during his career.[140] Given his immense influence only to die young, the article compared his cultural impact with that of Ritchie Valens and Darby Crash.[140]

Controversial legacy[]

Onfroy's success as "a zeitgeist-grabbing, industry-defying, boundary-destroying phenomenon" is "overshadowed" by his reported abuse of his pregnant ex-girlfriend, however, and the latter is the focus of his life story.[140] Nonetheless, the article contends that despite media attempts to suppress him, Onfroy's "impact on music will be felt for years to come" and his recordings have "helped signal a new era of post-streaming, post-genre teenagers".[140] Onfroy's personal life and history are also noted as prominent parts of his legacy.[132][140][141][142] An article in The Guardian described his legacy in more critical terms, stating that "[h]e will be remembered mostly for the unusually cruel violence he committed on vulnerable people, particularly his ex-girlfriend, crimes for which he never expressed remorse."[132] According to the article, his music "reflected a life lived with disregard for humanity, both other people's and his own"; and rarely attempted to engage in bravado or bragging, instead focusing on "mental illness, suicide, extreme misogyny, and a prevailing feeling of numbness."[132]

An article in The Atlantic expressed similar criticisms, though it also noted that Onfroy "reminded young fans in particular that their hurt was valid but that it did not form the sum total of their lives" and that he "gave voice to their insecurities."[141] Contrasting these elements of his legacy, the article acknowledged that though he spent his career encouraging young fans to recognize their greater worth, Onfroy's legacy is nonetheless characterized by the trauma he both experienced and caused.[141] In The Washington Post, Chris Richards commented on Onfroy's complicated legacy, contrasting how he "encouraged his fans to find hope in the fog of their despair, but bragged enthusiastically about the joy he felt in brutalizing others."[142] According to Richards, Onfroy's music "brought solace to the depressed" while validating the sort of violence he practiced and legitimized the pain of his fans while erasing the suffering of domestic violence victims.[142] Onfroy's music serves as an example for Richards of how "a hateful song" might normalize such feelings in "hateful people," which contributes to the profound paranoia in society about the hatred that might be in the minds of others.[142]

Musical style[]

Onfroy's influencers included Kurt Cobain, who he cited as his inspiration[143], Tupac Shakur, Cage the Elephant, The Fray, Papa Roach, Three Days Grace, Gorillaz, and Coldplay. When speaking on his influencers, Onfroy said, "I'm really into multi-genre things that aren't just based around rapping itself. I'm more inspired by artists in other genres besides rap."[144] Onfroy as an artist has been defined as versatile[145] and his music has been described as having a "lo-fi" aesthetic,[146] being diverse[136] and experimental, drawing influence from heavy metal.[147] His music also has the tendency to contain distorted bass[148] and an "intentional lack of polish."[149] Speaking about this, Onfroy said that the intentionally bad mixing on his tracks make it "genuine".[150] Some fans have also noted that his music has inspired many up-and-coming artists, such as Craig Xen, Lil Pump, Trippie Redd, Karami, and Smokepurpp, into channeling similar aesthetics into their music.[136]

Onfroy generally changed his vocal style depending on the type of song he was performing on. His vocal style has been described as displaying "emotional vulnerability" on much more depressing tracks[151] and as replicating screaming on much more aggressive tracks.[152] His songwriting has been described as outlandish and shocking, often referring to "violence, sex, and drugs,"[153] though on some projects such as The Fall and 17, Onfroy's songwriting was more emotional in comparison to his previous work, often referring to loneliness, depression, isolation, and anxiety.[154] He was known for his "depressing, and at times devastating" music that brought attention to mental health.[155]

Personal life[]

Onfroy lived in Florida.[30][156] He lived with rapper Denzel Curry and producer Ronny J in the past.[46] Before his death, Onfroy was moving into a 6,000-square-foot (560 m2) mansion in Parkland, Florida, which he bought, in November 2017, for US$1.4 million.[157]

Onfroy had two half siblings – an older sister named Ariana and a younger brother named Aiden.[158][159]

In February 2018, Onfroy posted on Instagram that he was preparing to return to school[160] and went on to announce in March 2018 that he was going to a community college to get his GED.[161] Onfroy was public about his struggle with depression.[132][162][163]

Three days after his death, Onfroy's mother announced on Instagram that Onfroy's girlfriend is pregnant with his child.[164] The ultrasound of the baby confirmed that it would be expected by November or December 2018. The baby was confirmed to be a boy on August 22, 2018.[165]

Public image and feuds[]

Onfroy was generally considered a controversial figure within the hip-hop industry due to assaulting fans,[166] public feuds with other artists[167] and general social media scandals.[168][169][170][171] Spin labeled Onfroy "rap's most controversial man"[172] and XXL labeled him as their most "controversial freshman ever".[173]

On August 24, 2017, a day before the release of his debut album, 17, Onfroy uploaded a video to the social media platform Instagram of him depicting the act of suicide by hanging.[174] He later uploaded a video onto Instagram showcasing the video being shot in part of a music video.[175]

Onfroy uploaded a music video to YouTube for his song "Riot" after sharing a music video for his on September 12, 2017. The controversial scene portrays him placing a noose around the neck of a white child then hanging him (representing lynching). The child's mother originally was anxious about the scene but said she was fine with the message being portrayed.[176] Talking on Instagram Live, he told his followers that the video was not supporting Black Lives Matter or addressing police brutality but was supporting All Lives Matter.[177]

Onfroy announced he was retiring from producing music on October 27, 2017.[178] Onfroy then stated using the Instagram story feature that he would make music again if South Floridan rapper, frequent collaborator and "best friend" Ski Mask the Slump God would become his friend again, telling his fans to post "Be friends with X again" on Ski Mask's social media accounts.[83] The post led to a social media exchange between the two, with Onfroy explaining his side using the Instagram Live feature on Instagram:

It was a lack of appreciation on his end, not because of me, I guess just from a business perspective. But he put a business perspective before a personal relationship, and I've been with him as a friend and as a brother for a very long time. I mean, it's just on some other shit to be honest. It's not on anything I've done wrong. I can't even say I've done anything to him, and I wouldn't go on the Internet and express that if I didn't care about the relationship, but you already know how it goes. They use you to where they wanna go and then part ways. And I've been used a lot if you haven't noticed.[84]

Ski Mask replied shortly afterwards, using Instagram's story feature, "[I'll] always love that alien-looking nigga named XXX, but I have to distance myself because it's like nobody would see me as an individual rapper if I don't, on top of that, that nigga crazy as hell", Ski Mask then went on to post a much more intense version of the story, claiming that Onfroy threatened his family.[179] On December 8, 2017, Onfroy wrote on Instagram, "don't care about what you said about me, you know who got your back, love you, forever", referring to Ski Mask the Slump God. Later, during Rolling Loud in Miami in 2018, they reunited, ending the feud.[180]

Following a rumor that Onfroy was arrested in Las Vegas, Houston, rapper Ugly God tweeted "Free X" which prompted a strong response from Onfroy which featured Onfroy insulting Ugly God. Ugly God later clarified there was no feud between them.[181]

Canadian rapper Drake previewed a new track, titled "KMT", on January 28, 2017.[182] The song, following its preview, was compared by users on social media to Onfroy's breakout song "Look at Me" due to the use of a similar triplet-heavy flow.[183] Before the release of KMT, HotNewHipHop revealed that Drake followed Onfroy's account on Twitter.[184] In an interview with XXL, Onfroy was questioned about the Drake comparisons, responding "If Drake is gonna take the flow, and I don't know if he legitimately did, but if that is the situation, at least reach out to a nigga, help a nigga out in this situation."[185]

Drake released the mixtape More Life on March 18, 2017, which included "KMT".[186] Onfroy was released from jail on probation two weeks later and was subsequently interviewed by WMIB, where he called Drake a "bitch" and said that he respected Drake's influence but felt like "KMT" was disrespecting him.[187] The following day on Twitter, Onfroy posted a picture of Drake's mother saying "she could get it".[188] He then posted a picture of Drake's mother and a child version of Drake with Onfroy's face photoshopped over that of Drake's father, Dennis Graham.[189] Later, in an interview with DJ Semtex, Drake denied those accusations that he stole Onfroy's "flow". Drake also denied knowing him and said that he only heard about him regarding rumors circulated following the "KMT" snippet.[190][191] Onfroy replied on his Twitter page requesting that Drake "come to Florida", after Onfroy saying that he won't "twitter rap with niggas".[192]

Rapper Offset from the hip-hop group Migos used Instagram's livestream feature to verbally attack Onfroy, further escalating the feud.[193] 600Breezy, a Chicago rapper (who is currently in prison for violating his probation),[194] then claimed that Drake gave him permission to enter into the feud and attack Onfroy.[195] 600Breezy told Onfroy that he has "got a couple niggas that will knock you off in your own city".[196] 600Breezy later went to Florida to attempt to search for him, though it was fruitless.[197]

On November 14, Onfroy posted on his Instagram story accusing rap group Migos of attacking him and pointing a firearm at him due to his former issues with Drake.[198]

The music streaming service Spotify announced on May 10, 2018, that it was going to stop promoting or recommending music by him and R&B artist R. Kelly. Spotify stated, "We don't censor content because of an artist's or creator's behavior, but we want our orial decisions—what we choose to program—to reflect our values".[199] The decision to remove Onfroy's music from curated playlists was later reversed on June 1 after Top Dawg Entertainment CEO Anthony Tiffith threatened to remove his label's music from the service.[200][201]

Incidents at concerts[]

On March 26, 2017, following Onfroy's release from jail, he set up a surprise concert that was arranged for April 7 in Miami. The show had an admission price of $5 until it was apparently filled up. However, before he arrived, a riot broke out. Police eventually escorted Onfroy out and closed the show down.[202]

Rapper and member of Onfroy's Members Only collective Wifisfuneral was assaulted at the first show in the Revenge Tour in Houston on May 31, 2017.[203] Wifisfuneral stage-dived into the audience where several audience members proceeded to kick him and then leave the venue.[204]

During a concert in San Diego in June 2017, a physical altercation occurred, which led to Onfroy being knocked unconscious[205][206][207] and an audience member being stabbed,[208] though the injury was non-life-threatening.[209] The assailant was reported to be an associate of rapper Rob Stone, then involved in a feud involving Onfroy and Ski Mask. The feud had already led to Ski Mask the Slump God being assaulted during rapper Desiigner's Outlet tour.[210] Stone released a diss track following the attack, titled "Xxxtracr", in which he mentions the attack in San Diego and then proceeds to tell Onfroy to "not come back to California".[211] Later in an interview, Stone denied knowing who that assailant is.[212][213] In October 2017, Stone confirmed that he and Onfroy had talked and resolved their feud.[214]

Onfroy punched an audience member during a concert at the Complex in Salt Lake City, Utah on June 18, 2017. He claimed this was in self-defense, as he had requested that no one in the audience touch him, warning that he would punch them if they did.[215]

Onfroy was scheduled to perform at the Concord Music Hall in Chicago, Illinois on June 21, 2017. The concert was canceled at the last minute, which led to hundreds of fans flooding the streets and nearly starting a riot.[216] He said that the reason for the performance being canceled was the venue management's decision.[216] Four days later, his cousin was shot and he canceled his tour.[217]

Following the release of Onfroy's 17 album, a free concert was announced to take place at the Orpheum in Tampa, Florida, on September 2, 2017.[218] The venue only had the capacity to support 750 concertgoers, but over 3,000 people appeared to attend the concert and the venue had to cancel the concert before a safety hazard was created.[219] This led to many fans of the artist nearly rioting in the street and the police needing to break up the crowd.[220] Some fans later claimed online that they were teargassed by police officers following the riot.[221]

Onfroy was involved in another brawl with a fan during California's Rolling Loud Festival on October 23, 2017. Onfroy announced on Instagram that the fight was purely self-defense before any video of the altercation was uploaded.[222]

Legal issues and controversy[]

In 2014, Onfroy was sent to a youth detention center for a year on gun possession charges.[41][32] According to him, during his time in detention, the district attorney was attempting to try the artist as an adult for gun possession, charges which Onfroy said, would have had a sentence of 5–10 years in prison.[32]

In July 2016, he was arrested and charged with robbery and assault with a deadly weapon.[47][48] According to the arrest report, Onfroy entered the home of Che Thomas with three other people, armed with a firearm. After pistol-whipping Thomas three times, Onfroy escaped the home with an iPad, an iPhone, a Sony PlayStation Portable and $20.[223] Onfroy was arrested in Orlando originally until he was transferred to Orange County.[28]

After posting the bail of $10,000[224] in early October of the same year, while awaiting trial, the rapper was arrested again later that month on charges of false imprisonment, witness tampering, and aggravated battery of a pregnant victim.[49][225] On March 26, 2017, Onfroy was released from jail on bail[58][226] while facing charges of robbery and assault with a deadly weapon. His trial for aggravated battery of a pregnant victim was originally going to take place in May 2017 and was pushed back several times, and was set to take place on October 5, 2017.[227] On September 8, 2017, Pitchfork leaked the testimony of the victim in Onfroy's aggravated battery case.[228] The trial was then delayed again[229] with a date of December 11, 2017, announced.[230] Controversy arose once again following Onfroy's choice to donate $100,000 to domestic violence prevention programs[231] and then further when Onfroy announced an event to support rape victims though it was later canceled due to vandalism.[232]

Onfroy's trial was delayed again after an affidavit was filed asking for the charges to be "completely dropped".[233] The victim in the case also declined to testify in court. In reaction, the prosecution moved to split the case into two, with witness tampering charges filed against Onfroy and a new trial date announced for December 15, 2017.[234] On December 10, 2017, Onfroy posted a message to Instagram, writing "Court date is on the 15th 9:00 am here is my court information, if I am taken into custody, I want to tell everyone I've let down I apologize, I tried my best, I really did ... ";[235] he then released the information of the court hearing.[236]

XXXTentacion's sideview mugshot in December 2017

Onfroy pleaded not guilty on December 14, 2017, and was taken into pretrial custody after a motion was filed by the prosecution on the grounds of Onfroy having violated his bond.[237] He was held without bail.[238] It was confirmed on December 20, 2017, that Onfroy was being released on house arrest.[156] Onfroy was released from house arrest on March 21, 2018.[239]

Shortly after being released from house arrest, a video surfaced of Onfroy hitting a woman in 2013.[240] Onfroy's attorneys claimed the video, which shows Onfroy dancing to some music before striking the girl, was "obviously ... in jest".[241] Onfroy claimed afterwards that he was afraid he was going to be financially extorted by the woman and that members of her family had already called him requesting money.[242] The woman shown with Onfroy in the video came forward several days later saying she was "terrified for her life";[243] however, according to TMZ, Onfroy intended to sue the woman for fraud and defamation after her family allegedly demanded a large sum of money in exchange for her silence.[244] The woman later released a statement saying that the version of events described by Onfroy was correct, and that she "hope[d] that people see the video in the playful context in which it was recorded and nothing more".[245] After the rapper's death, his domestic abuse charges were dropped.

On October 23, 2018, Pitchfork leaked secretly recorded audio of Onfroy talking with acquaintances around the time of his October 8, 2016 arrest. In the recording, he allegedly confessed to domestic abuse, and described an incident in which he stabbed nine people.[246] The tape was considered a confession by both the prosecution and defense.[247][248]

Discography[]

Awards and nominations[]

American Music Awards[]

Year Nominee/work Award Result Ref.
2018 XXXTentacion New Artist Of The Year Nominated
17 Favorite Album – Soul/R&B Won

BET Hip-Hop Awards[]

Year Nominee/work Award Result Ref.
2018 XXXTentacion Best New Hip Hop Artist Won

Billboard Music Awards[]

Year Nominee/work Award Result Ref.
2018 17 Top R&B Album Nominated

See also[]

References[]

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