Coolio Age, Death, Wife, Family, Biography & More

Quick Info→
Hometown: Torrance, California, U.S.
Death Cause: Cardiac Arrest
Age: 59 Years


Real nameArtis Leon Ivey Junior [1]The Indian Express
Profession(s)• Rapper/Singer
• Actor
• Chef
• Social Activist
Famous forHis song "Gangsta's Paradise" (1995)
Physical Stats & More
Height (approx.)in centimeters- 173 cm
in meters- 1.73 m
in feet & inches- 5’ 8”
Weight (approx.)in kilograms- 80 kg
in pounds- 176 lbs
Eye ColourBlack
Hair ColourBlack
DebutSong: Whatcha Gonna Do? (1987)
TV (Actor): Martin (1995)
Film (Actor): Phat Beach (1996) (As himself)
Coolio on the cover of the Phat Beach
Awards• Grammy Award for 'Best Rap Solo Performance' for the song "Gangsta's Paradise" in 1996
• MTV VMA award for 'Best Rap Video' for "Gangsta's Paradise," 'Best dance video' for "1 2 3 4 (Sumpin' New)," and 'Best Video from a Film' for "Gangsta's Paradise" in 'Dangerous Minds'
Personal Life
Date of Birth1 August 1963 (Thursday)
BirthplaceTorrance, California, U.S.
Date of Death28 September 2022 (Wednesday)
Place of DeathLos Angeles, U.S.
Age (at the time of death) 59 Years
Death CauseCardiac Arrest [2]New York Post
Zodiac signLeo
SignatureCoolio's signature
HometownTorrance, California, U.S.
College/UniversityCompton Community College
ReligionSome sources claim that he followed Islam; however, in an interview, he denied following any organised religion and said, “You know, I’m not a believer in any organized religion, I don’t call myself a Muslim or a Christian or a Buddhist. But I do believe in one God. And he’s been watching over me. I mean, by now I should be in jail, living on the streets or dead.[3]Rolling Stone
EthnicityAfrican American
Food HabitNon-vegetarian
HobbyReading books
Tattoo(s)• Jugalo Cool on left arm
Coolio's Jugalo Cool tattoo
• Black Power on left shoulder
Coolio's black power tattoo
• Compton on left forearm
Coolio's Compton tattoo
ControversiesMultiple Arrests for Drugs, Gun, and Expired driving licence
When he was in school, he was arrested for carrying a gun to school and fot theft, and he was sentenced to prison. [4]BBCHe was arrested in 1998 for possession of marijuana, gun, and driving on the wrong side with an expired driving licence. [5]MTV He was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport in 2009 for possession of drugs and subsequently spent 18 months in a rehabilitation program. [6]The New York Times He was arrested at Los Angeles International Airport in 2016 for possession of a gun. A member of his crew said that the gun belonged to him; however, Coolio later accepted that the gun belonged to him. [7]The Guardian

Fight with a shopkeeper
He was arrested in 1998 in Stuttgart, Germany for fighting with a shopkeeper after which he was put in 6-months probation and fined $30,000. The shopkeeper alleged that Coolio tried to leave the shop without paying the money. [8]Hindustan Times

Arrested for Domestic Violence
In 2013, his girlfriend Anabelle Chatman accused him of domestic violence following which he was arrested. She said that he visited her house with his another girlfriend Melynda Karr and tried to leave with her son. When she tried to stop him, he hit her; however, Coolio only accepted getting into ana altercation and denied hitting her.

Parody of Gangsta's Paradise
American singer Weird Al Yankovic, who is famous for creating parodies of many songs, made a parody song of Coolio's famous song Gangsta's Paradise, which made Coolio angry; however, they later settled the differences between them. [9]The Things
Coolio with Weird Al Yankovic

Child support petitions
Various cases were filed against him for the child support. A case was filed against him in 1999 by a woman named Juanita Randle, which was settled after 5 years. Two separate cases were filed in 2010 by two women named Taleya White and Annabella Bellesi both of which were settled in 2012. [10]The Sun
Relationships & More
Marital StatusDivorced
Affairs/Girlfriends• Adina Howard (American singer and songwriter)
• Nora Amile (Musician)
• Anabella Chatman
• Melynda Karr
• Mimi (Exotic dancer)
Coolio with his alleged girlfriend Mimi
Marriage DateYear, 1996
Wife/SpouseJosefa Salinas (m. 1996 - div. 2000) (radio personality)
Coolio with his ex-wife, Josefa Salinas
ChildrenSon(s)- 4
• Grtis Ivey
• Milan Ivey
• Darius Ivey
• Artis Ivey III

Daughter(s)- 6
• Brandi Ivey
• Zhaneand Ivey
• Jackie Ivey
• Artisha Ivey
• Shayne Ivey
• Kate Ivey
Coolio with his children
Coolio with his sons
ParentsFather- Artis Leon Ivey Sr (carpenter)
Coolio's father, Artis Leon Ivey Sr
Mother- Jakie Slater (a factory worker)
Coolio's mother, Jakie Slater
SiblingsBrother- Malieek Straughter (a rapper who performed with Coolio on the track C U When U Get There)
Coolio's brother Malieek Straughter
Sister- None
Style Quotient
Car CollectionHummer
Money Factor
Salary (approx.)$100,000 ( as of 2022) [11]Yahoo Finance
Net Worth (approx.)$1.5 million (as of 2022) [12]Yahoo Finance


Some Lesser Known Facts About Coolio

  • Coolio was an American rapper, singer, actor, chef, and social activist. He became very famous after his song “Gangsta’s Paradise” was released in 1995; the song was also featured in the movie Dangerous Minds starring Michelle Pfieffer.

    Coolio (right) with Michelle Pfeiffer

    Coolio (right) with Michelle Pfeiffer

  • He was a studious child during his childhood and used to read books on diverse subjects in a nearby library. While talking about his reading habit in an interview later, he revealed that he read books on different subjects and said,

    I lived in that library, man. I read every kid’s book they had in there. I even read Judy Blume” (the author who specializes in books about female adolescence).” [13]Rolling Stone

  • He looked very frail when he was a child as he suffered from Asthma.
  • He became a member of the ‘Baby Crip’ gang after moving to Compton, California from Torrance, California and started carrying weapons to school to portray himself as a gangster; however, upon witnessing a gruesome murder by his fellow gang members, he left the gang.
  • His stepfather and mother had a large collection of music albums of various artists, and Coolio used to listen to them, which generated his interest in music. He described the collection as huge and diverse in an interview and said,

    When I was a kid, my mom and stepfather was listening to Miles Davis, Stevie Wonder, the Supremes, the Dramatics, Marvin Gaye, Curtis Mayfield — all that shit. Back in those days, people didn’t have big album collections, at least not in the ghetto, but we did. I listen to old soul, old funk, a couple of old rap albums, maybe some new rap stuff here and there. I don’t like new R&B — period.” [14]Rolling Stone

  • He became a crack-cocaine addict during his teens; however, he quit after his brother Spoon threatened to kill him if if he would not quit. He later joined the Firefighter program to get rid of the addiction. He also worked at Los Angeles International Airport as a security personnel for a short period of time.
  • He joined the music group ‘WC and the Maad Circle’ in his initial years as a rapper.
  • His debut solo album, ‘It Takes a Thief’ was certified Platinum as it sold more than 1 million copies, and its highest position on Billboard 200 chart was 8th.

    Cover of Coolio's debut solo album 'It takes a thief'

    Cover of Coolio’s debut solo album ‘It takes a thief’

  • His song ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ became the number 1 track on the music charts of many countries including the US, Switzerland, the UK, Australia, the Netherlands, Germany, Austria, Italy, Sweden, Norway, Ireland, New Zealand, and France.
  • He was very passionate about cooking and often said that everyone should know it. The New York Times regarded his book ‘Cookin’ with Coolio: 5 Star Meals at a 1 Star Price,’ which was released in 2009, as a bestseller. His favourite dish to cook was Bacon.

    Cover of Coolio's book Cookin with Coolio

    Cover of Coolio’s book Cookin with Coolio

  • He performed for UN peacekeeping troops in Bosnia Herzegovina and Tuzla in 2002.

    Coolio performing in a concert

    Coolio performing in a concert

  • He became the spokesperson of the Asthma and Allergy Foundation of America and while spreading awareness about asthma cases, he emphasised that anyone who experiences Asthma symptoms shall get himself checked and said,

    The big message I want to get across is if you have symptoms, you need to get them checked out. If you have asthma, you need to be responsible and recognize that fact and deal with it, because otherwise you can get sick and wind up hospitalized.” [15]USA Today

  • He joined Environmental Justice and Climate Change (EJCC) campaign as a spokesperson to spread awareness about global warming among the African-American community in Historically Black Colleges and Universities (HBCUs) in the U.S.
  • According to some sources, after he performed a song by Spanish singer Julio Iglesias, he was nicknamed Coolio, and according to other sources, he got this name after a few of his friends found him listening to Puerto Rican singer José Feliciano. Although the name was supposed to be a mocking name, he liked it and made it his artist’s name.
  • He worked as a voice-over artist for the American animated science show Futurama (1999-2003).
  • In February 2016, he was performing in a live concert during which he suffered an Asthma attack. One of his fans gave him an inhaler which he used to continue his performance.
  • His song ‘Gangsta’s Paradise’ is one of the few songs with 1 billion views on YouTube.
    Cover of Gangsta's Paradise
  • He worked with many legendary hip-hop artists including Tupac Shakur, Dr. Dre, Eazy E, and Snoop Dogg.

    Coolio with Dr Dre and Eazy E

    Coolio with Dr Dre and Eazy E

  • He was one of the few artists who advocated ending the feud between the East Coast and the West Coast. In his speech after he won the Grammy Award in 1996 when the feud was at its peak, he said that he wanted everyone to stop fighting and get united and said,

    I’d like to claim this Grammy on behalf of the whole hip-hop nation, West Coast, East Coast, and worldwide, united we stand, divided we fall.”

    Coolio (left) after winning Grammy award with L.V.

    Coolio (left) after winning a Grammy award with L.V.

  • He was found unconscious in the bathroom of a friend’s house he visited on the day of his death, and they performed CPR for 45 minutes to revive him but failed, and he was later pronounced dead. Most of the sources claimed Cardiac arrest; however, a few of his friends said that he might have passed away after suffering an Asthma attack.
  • His hairstyle of long braids became his signature style, which he kept till his death in 2022.
  • He ran for Vice President of the U.S. in the 2020 elections alongside the pornstar Cherrie Deville who ran for presidential post of the U.S. [16]HipHopDX

    Coolio (right) with Cherrie Deville

    Coolio (right) with Cherrie Deville