Today, one of hip-hop's greats has reason to celebrate. DMX, also known as Earl Simmons. who once dropped two No. 1 albums in the same calendar year, has turned 50.
From the haunting Dark Man X era to the Ruff Ryders collective, DMX' iconic voice has been at the center of many hip-hop bangers. The rapper and actor has had an active and fruitful career over the course of the 1990s and early aughts. Ever since DMX’s release from prison in 2018, he’s working on new music, films and maintaining a healthier lifestyle. DMX checked himself in October 2019 back into rehab, but this time it was a precaution to avoid any more legal troubles.
In September 2019 the Ruff Ryders icon signed a new deal with Def Jam Records.
DMX released his 1998 debut It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot on the legendary label and became one of Def Jam’s top-selling artists throughout the late 1990s and early 2000s. He released five albums on the label, including 1998’s Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood and 1999’s … And Then There Was X. His last album for the label was 2003’s Grand Champ.
We can't wait to hear new music from X. However, despite all the time DMX has spent in the spotlight, there are still some things that many people do not know about him...
10 Things You Probably Didn't Know About DMX
1. He Was a Beatboxer
Before he made it as a rapper, DMX got his start as a beatboxer. He began performing in 1988.
2. He Got His Name From an Instrument
DMX used his name to pay tribute to the Oberheim DMX drum machine, which was an instrument he used in the 1980s. However, “DMX” has also been interpreted as standing for “Dark Man X.”
3. He Is in an Elite Group With Tupac
DMX and Tupac are the only two rappers in history to have released two albums that debuted at number one on the charts in the same exact year. DMX achieved this with his albums titled It’s Dark and Hell Is Hot and Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood.
4. He Holds a Special Record
DMX truly is in a league of his own when it comes to debuting albums. In fact, he is the only artist in the history of ever to have five consecutive albums debut at number one on the charts.
5. He Got Into Preaching
After a wildly successful career as a rapper, DMX decided he wanted to pursue a career as a preacher in 2009. Before he was incarcerated, he completed a Gospel album.
His youngest daughter, shares Aaliyah's name -- a sign of appreciation for the impact the deceased performer had on his life.
7. He Is in a Video Game
You can find DMX in the 2003 game Def Jam Vendetta. In the game, he plays himself.
8. He Has 15 Children
DMX was married to Tashera Simmons, the mother of his four children. They got married in 1999 and legally separated from each other after they were married for 11 years. His 15th child, a son was born from his girlfriend, Desiree Lindstrom.
He’s the youngest of 15 children that DMX has from previous relationships. DMX Proposed to his girlfriend Desiree Lindstrom in August 2019.