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Rapper Nipsey Hussle Shot And Killed in LA

Grammy-nominated rap artist, entrepreneur and community philanthropist Ermias Asghedom, better known as Nipsey Hussle, was shot and killed Sunday. His death was announced on Twitter by Los Angeles mayor Eric Garcetti. Nipsey Hussle was 33.

The shooting took place in South Los Angeles, outside of Marathon Clothing, a store he owned on West Slauson Avenue.

Nipsey Hussle was widely respected in the hip-hop world, not just for his musical contributions but for the hustle ethic personified in his chosen stage name. He overcame the obstacles of an unforgiving environment, made famous by generations of West Coast rap legends, to become one of the most beloved and inspirational figures within the culture.

Raised in the gangland territory of South Central L.A., Nipsey Hussle came of age as a member of the Rollin' 60s, a notorious Crip neighborhood. Yet he rose to prominence by legitimizing his street hustle and using that entrepreneurial drive to create economic empowerment in his marginalized community.

Forbes recently documented his rise as a real-estate mogul, which included buying the strip mall on West Slauson Avenue where his Marathon store is located. The purchase was a notable move to positively reinvest in his neighborhood and buy back the block where he'd hustled illegally as a youngster.

As an artist, Nipsey Hussle was a noted trendsetter. Born of Eritrean descent on his father's side, Nipsey Hussle's hip-hop dreams began in childhood. He released his first mixtape, Slauson Boy Volume 1, in 2005.

But real renown began when he employed a marketing move that put the stagnating music industry on notice. After his first label deal with Epic Records went sour in 2010, he independently released his 2013 mixtape, Crenshaw, with an unprecedented price point.

"The marketing for the mixtape was that we only made a thousand units and sold them for a hundred dollars apiece," Nipsey Hussle told GQ in February for a recent story featuring he and longtime girlfriend, actress Lauren London. "It was a scarcity model."

Nipsey Hussle was shot and killed on Sunday in Los Angeles.

Nicholas Watkin/Courtesy of Atlantic Records

And it worked. At a time when many artists were being told by the industry to give their music away for free, Nipsey went the other way. Jay-Z, one of many fans he won over with his music and marketing savvy, bought 100 copies. It became the model for his career as a self-starter. When he returned to a major label, it would be in partnership with his independent label, All Money In.

His 2018 album, Victory Lap, earned him a Grammy nomination for best rap album. The release — which featured artists including Puff Daddy, YG, Kendrick Lamar and Marsha Ambrosius — was his official major-label debut and a full circle moment for Nipsey Hussle.

"Having strong enemies is a blessing," reads Nipsey Hussle's last message on Twitter, posted shortly before his death.

Hussle is survived by his two-year-old son Kross with actress Lauren

Nipsey's daughter Emani from a previous relationship

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My view: This so sad and senseless, why are some people so evil and wicked?, just think about his family, especially his young kids. It's terrible. It is time for American celebs to campaign against guns. The only answer to gun violence is to ban all guns.

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