Hip hop artist Juice WRLD dies at the age of 21 in Chicago
Rap artist Juice WRLD, who began his career on SoundCloud and became a music juggernaut and rose to the top of the chart with both the Sting-sampled smash Lucid Dreams, died at home Sunday after a medical emergency at Chicago’s Midway International Airport.
The singer, whose real surname was Jarad A. Higgins, aged 21. Officials have not revealed details of his cause of death.
He was taken to the hospital at the clinic at 3:15 a.m. and transported to the Cook County Medical Examiner’s office some hours later, according to Natalia Derevyanny, spokeswoman for the department, who said the autopsy will occur on Monday.
Police began a death examination after a 21-year-old male in a life-threatening emergency had been transported from Midway to the area hospital. Police said there were no signs of foul play and those on board the aircraft cooperated with the officials. Chicago Fire brigade spokesperson Larry Langford said that the man had undergone cardiac arrest and was taken to the hospital from the Atlantic Aviation hangar in Midway, away from the main terminal where private aircraft landed. Atlantic didn’t send a message back on Sunday.
The singer, who was voted the Best New Artist at the Billboard Music Awards in May 2019, lived in the Chicago suburb of Homewood, where he stuck out early as an artist.
Juice WRLD had only turned 21 days earlier. He’s only been out of high school for two years.
Like a decent number of female hip-hop artists, Juice WRLD mixed rapting and singing on his tracks, muttering phrases sometimes and relying more on rhythm. His single Lucid Dreams, which was a strong version of Sting’s 1993 album Shape of My Soul, was a six-time platinum sensation, hitting No. 2 on the all-generic Hot 100 list.
“I was very surprised by what he put on top of (my version),” Sting said to the Washington post this year. “This is a really good song.”
Juice WRLD got a gig on the SoundCloud music sharing website before committing to a record label and achieving major success with streaming. His debut album, Goodbye & Good Riddance, was a platinum hit. This included the song All Girls Are The Same, which received platinum status, along with seven further platinum singles including Armed & Dangerous, Robbery, Lovely China and Legends, which included the lines, “What’s the 27 Club?/We’re not making this past 21.”
He received 10 singles with gold status and also had popularity with the 2018 Wrld on Drugs, a collaborative album with rapper-singer-producer Future.
His debut album, Speed racer for Love, debuted on the Billboard charts this year, and his most recent single, Raider with YoungBoy Never Broke Again, hit the Top 10 album charts in October.
Juice WRLD transferred from Homewood-Flossmoor Community High School outside Chicago in 2017, where he gained a reputation as a talented musician for approximately 3,000 students. School officials said on Sunday that they would provide counseling services for students upset by his passing.
“He is recognized by his teachers and staff as being a bright and creative learner. Jared was especially talented in music and played many devices,” said school spokeswoman Jodi Bryant. “He was a caring and friendly person who always tried to reach out to others while at the same time he was thoughtful and had a great feeling of humor.”