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It's dark, and Hell is hot.
Earl Simmons (1970-), more widely known by his stage name DMX, is a rapper and actor from Yonkers, New York. The name DMX was originally not an acronym, but simply part of a name taken from a popular drum machine of The Nineties, the Oberheim DMX. However, the acronym has come to stand for "Dark Man of the Unknown (or X for short)."
DMX is widely known for his harsh, gravelly voice, his violent subject matter (particularly in his earlier albums), and the frequent call-and-response lyrics used in his songs. That, and his extensive arrest record.
Discography by release date:
- It's Dark and Hell Is Hot: 1998
- Flesh of my Flesh, Blood of my Blood: 1998 (with this, he became the first artist to release two #1 albums within a year)
- ...And Then There Was X: 1999
- The Great Depression: 2001
- Grand Champ: 2003
- Year of the Dog...Again: 2006
- Walk With Me Now/You'll Fly With Me Later: A double album originally intended to be released in 2008, but the release is constantly being pushed back due to DMX's current incarceration.
This artist provides examples of:
- Abusive Parents: His mother starved him and abandoned him in a group home.
- All Girls Want Bad Boys- "Good Girls, Bad Guys" from ...And Then There Was X provides a somewhat humorous take on this.
- As the Good Book Says...- "Lord Give Me a Sign" begins with DMX quoting Isaiah 54:17.
- Badass Preacher- He always finds a way to insert a full-blown prayer track into his albums in between the gangster joints.
- Call-and-Response Song- The Damien series, as well as Angel and a few other songs.
- Call Back- In Damien III- "What happened to the right hand, Light Man?" is a Call Back to Damien's "For that nigga, I would bleed/ give him my right hand/ now that I think about it, yo, that's my man!"
- Career Killer- "The Professional" from ...And Then There Was X has DMX portray a contract killer as opposed to simply a gangster.
- Chronic Villainy- Referenced occasionally in his Prayer songs, as well as Ready To Meet Him.
- Creator Thumbprint: DMX loves dogs. Specifically, pitbulls.
- Deal with the Devil- "Damien" and its sequels.
- Dream Team / Hype Backlash- His much-hyped collaboration with Eminem was kind of mediocre.
- Even Bad Men Love Their (Grand)Mamas- The Great Depression's "I Miss You" is an ode to his late grandmother.
- Disappeared Dad: His father left him and his mom to take care of themselves.
- Downer Ending- The song "ATF" ends with DMX dying in a shootout with police.
- Actually insinuated it was all a dream.
- Evil Sounds Deep- In the "Damien" series, the titular character usually has a strange yet not necessarily deep voice. However, should he get serious about something, this trope goes into full swing.
- Any time he takes his shirt off onstage, wave of fangirl shrieks--more girls than you'd ever think would be at a hardcore rap concert--is sure to follow.
- Foster Kid: Lived in group homes and foster homes for a while after his mother abandoned him.
- Hey, It's That Voice!- Having guest rappers Jadakiss and Styles P on a song from Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood is pretty par for the course for a rap album. Having Marilyn Manson most certainly is not.
- Many people thought "Damian" was just DMX doing a high pitched voice. It's actually Mos Def.
- Horrorcore: It's Dark and Hell Is Hot and Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood.
- I Love the Dead: This lyric from "Bring Your Whole Crew":
I got blood on my hands and there's no remorse / I got blood on my dick 'cause I fucked a corpse!
- List Song- "Who We Be" from The Great Depression and "What These B***ches Want" from ...And Then There Was X.
- Loners Are Freaks: "How many times do I have to tell you rap niggas I have no friends?!" (from "What's My Name?")
- Lyrical Tic: He makes frequent use of growls, barking, "uh!", and "come on!" in his songs
- Mood Whiplash- His video for "Where Da Hood At?" is his typical violent gangster rap (sprinkled with a little gay bashing), but then it goes into a clip of "Ayo Kato," a sweet, sad tribute to a deceased friend.
- Moral Dissonance- DMX will go from gangster raps about committing murder to what are essentially gospels within the same album.
- Mr. Fanservice: Has quite a number of female fans, must be the allergy to shirts.
- Myth Arc- The "Damien" story crosses songs from three different albums.
- My Name Is Not Durwood- Used in Damien III
Damien"What happened to the right hand, Light Man?
X"Nah, that's Dark Man
Damien"Well, let's get it right, then."
- Punctuated for Emphasis: Commonly used, but most evident in "What's My Name?", where he recites his name, the title, and numerous other phrases IN! THIS! MANNER!
- Soprano and Gravel- His duets with Aaliyah and Monica.
- Verbal Tic- "What?!", "C'mon!", and dog barks and growls, among other things.
- The barking even surfaced during his Behind the Music episode, while he was talking about his dead grandmother.