Grammy-nominated rapper Nipsey Hussle shot and killed
The music world has woken up to the shock news that Grammy-nominated rapper Nipsey Hussle is dead after being fatally shot on Sunday in Los Angeles.
The New York Times reports that the American rapper was shot and killed outside his clothing store, while two other people were injured.
The motive behind the shooting is unclear with no arrests being made at the time of publication.
The rapper's death has sent shockwaves through the entertainment world with Pharrell, Pusha-T and J. Cole all expressing their shock.
His album Victory Lap was nominated for best rap album at this year's Grammy Awards.
It was his first formal album, which dropped after six years of teasing but ultimately lost the honor to rap's woman of the moment Cardi B.
"This doesn't make any sense. My spirit is shaken by this. I'm so sorry this happened to you," Rihanna tweeted.
"Our hearts are with the loved ones of Nipsey Hussle and everyone touched by this awful tragedy," Los Angeles Mayor Eric Garcetti tweeted.
A police spokesman said the suspected shooter remained at large.
"LA is hurt deeply each time a young life is lost to senseless gun violence," Garcetti said.
The Los Angeles Times reported the shooting was "likely planned and gang-related."
Gone 2 soon
Outside his clothing store, a crowd gathered behind yellow police tape, and a grief-stricken woman clasped her hand over her mouth.
At least one cartridge case lay on the ground, near a black ball cap.
Hours before his death Hussle - whose youth was intertwined with Los Angeles gang culture - tweeted: "Having strong enemies is a blessing."
Megastar Drake also posted his condolences, saying: "My whole energy is just at a low right now hearing this."
"You were a real one to your people and the rest of us," Drake wrote. "Rest easy my g."
Born Ermias Asghedom, Hussle was seen by many in Los Angeles as a lynchpin of the community, redistributing his earnings into the violence-plagued neighborhoods he came from.
The artist was involved in a project to reclaim the California city's southern districts for the black residents who made it sing.
"Hussle had a vision of a neighborhood built for and by the sons and daughters of South L.A." said city councilman Marqueece Harris-Dawson in a statement following news of the rapper's death.
"During his life, he moved from shadows into the bright hope of freedom and community revitalization."
Hussle was open about his early years in the notorious Crips gang, telling the Los Angeles Times newspaper in 2018: "we dealt with death, with murder."
"It was like living in a war zone, where people die on these blocks and everybody is a little bit immune to it," he said.
"I guess they call it post-traumatic stress, when you have people that have been at war for such a long time."
- additional reporting by AFP