Ol’ Dirty Bastard, a founding member of the Wu-Tang Clan, died of unknown causes on Saturday in New York, according to his spokesperson. He was 35, but would have turned 36 on Monday.
Sources close to the rapper (whose real name was Russell Tyrone Jones) said he had complained of chest pains earlier in the day, although no further details are available as of yet. ODB had been scheduled to perform with Wu-Tang at a concert in New Jersey on Friday night, but missed the show.
Another source reported that ODB arrived in the New York area on a flight from Denver at 10:30 p.m. Friday. He was at Wu-Tang’s studio, 36 Records LLC on West 34th Street in New York, when he collapsed at approximately 4:35 p.m. on Saturday (November 13). He was pronounced dead at 5:04 p.m., according to Ellen Borakove, a spokesperson for the city medical examiner’s office. She said that an autopsy will be conducted Sunday, and results should be known Sunday afternoon.
A statement was released Saturday evening by ODB’s mother, Cherry Jones. “This evening, I received a phone call that is every mother’s worst dream,” she said. “My son, Russell Jones, passed away. To the public, he was known as Ol’ Dirty Bastard, but to me, he was known as Rusty, the kindest, most generous soul on earth. I appreciate all the support and prayers that I have received. Russell was more than a rapper, he was a loving father, brother, uncle, and most of all, son.”
Damon Dash, who signed ODB to Roc-A-Fella Records last fall, also released a statement. “All of us in the Roc-A-Fella family are shocked and saddened by the sudden and tragic death or our brother and friend,” Dash said. “Russell inspired all of us with his spirit, wit and tremendous heart. He will be missed dearly, and our thoughts, prayers and deepest condolences go out to his wonderful family. The world has lost a great talent, but we mourn the loss of our friend.”
Dirty, easily the most eccentric of the nine Wu-Tang Clan rappers (if not in all of hip-hop), showed promise as a solo artist, but was hindered by a long series of clashes with the law, which ranged from shoplifting to making terrorist threats.
The rapper, who also went by several unusual aliases (including Osirus, Joe Bannanas [sic], Dirt McGirt, Dirt Dog, Unique Ason and Big Baby Jesus), was released from prison last year. He had served a two-year term for parole violation and drug charges.
After his release from prison and psychiatric care, ODB signed with the Roc and was recording as Dirt McGirt. Most recently, he collaborated with Macy Gray for the album.
After several years apart, Wu-Tang reunited this summer for a concert in California. A recording of the show, titled Disciples of the 36 Chambers: Chapter 1, was released in September.
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“me and mariah
go back like babies with pacifiers”
maybe it wasnt played on mtv enough?
or how about the time that mtv was interviewing him in a limo and he was explaining how he used to be on welfare and he still had his card on him, and he took them to the welfare office to show him that when you slid your card if you were eligible a receipt would print out allowing you to claim your check.
mtv left out the fact that when he slid his card it still worked, he got his welfare check and climbed back into the limo to continue the interview.
thats the ol dirty that we love.
we also compared his crimes to those of robert downey jr.’s many years back.