On Thursday (Dec. 31), the wife of British-born MC MF DOOM issued a statement on Instagram revealing that he had died on Halloween. DOOM’s former record label Rhymesayers Entertainment also confirmed his death with a tweet of their own. DOOM’s cause of death remains unknown. He was 49.
DOOM’s lyrical dexterity, penchant for comic book references, and collaborative efforts made him a beloved figure in hip-hop. Though his identity remained hidden for most of his 30-plus-year career, the mask-wearing MC shook the genre in 2004 when he released Madvillainy with Madlib — the act’s first entry on the Billboard 200. That same year, he dropped his celebrated album Mm. Food, which peaked at No. 9 on the Heatseekers Albums chart.
A bevy of hip-hop stars, including Jay Electronica, Tyler, The Creator, Q-Tip, Playboi Carti and more paid homage to the revered lyricist in a series of tweets. Check out some of the messages below.
May Allah be please w our Brother MF DOOM.
— J A Y E L E C T R O N I C A (@JayElectronica) December 31, 2020
MF DOOM I’m at a lost of words.
— Stalley (@Stalley) December 31, 2020
How ironic is it the guy wearing the mask as a character most his life… dies on HALLOWEEN in the year we all had to wear masks…. smh Rest In Peace MF DOOM.
— Statik Selektah (@StatikSelekt) December 31, 2020
RIP MF DOOM. “Fancy Clown”, “All Caps”, “Accordion”, “Hoe Cakes”, on repeat
— Skyzoo (@skyzoo) December 31, 2020
— 9th Wonder (@9thwonder) December 31, 2020
Operation Doomsday one of my fav albums EVER
— Emilio Rojas (@emiliorojas) December 31, 2020
MF DOOM FOREVER
— Travis Barker (@travisbarker) December 31, 2020
rIP mF dOOM ! wTF
— (@playboicarti) December 31, 2020
I heard that some authors rewrote entire novels by the greats just to see how it felt
Denzel and I made UNLOCKED talking about DOOM every single day just trying to channel an ounce of the feeling
RIP MF DOOM
— kennybeats (@kennybeats) December 31, 2020
2020 had to do us dirty one more time. RIP MF DOOM! May your sound inspire music FOREVER! pic.twitter.com/QYsz2NV0Q0
— KOTA (@KotaTheFriend) December 31, 2020
RIP MF DOOM
— Cordae’ (@cordae) December 31, 2020
Sometimes the art of consistency is overlooked. Some of our favorite indie artists have to drop 3 times more than others in this climate. Term, Grafh & Ransom. These brothers have been FIRE all year so they receive a Rap Connoisseurs golden trophy ®©
— Crook (@CrookedIntriago) December 31, 2020
My soul is crushed.
— FLYLO (@flyinglotus) December 31, 2020
All u ever needed in hip hop was this record. Sorted. Done. Give it to the fucking aliens pic.twitter.com/knqTs1Q1HV
— FLYLO (@flyinglotus) December 31, 2020
safe travels villain
— Tyler, The Creator (@tylerthecreator) December 31, 2020
MF DOOM FOREVER
— el-p (@therealelp) December 31, 2020
I wanted to be like DOOM ALLCAPSNOSPACES. a black weirdo i could look up to. i wish we could have met
— JPEGMAFIA (@darkskinmanson) December 31, 2020
LONG LIVE MF DOOM
— Denzel Curry (@denzelcurry) December 31, 2020
MF Doom, the British-born artist who performed in a supervillain mask and started his rapping career more than 30 years ago, died on Oct. 31 of unknown causes, his wife announced Thursday (Dec. 31) — exactly two months after his death. He was 49 years old.
“Begin all things by giving thanks to THE ALL!” Jasmine wrote in the post about her late husband (born Daniel Dumile) on the MF Doom Instagram account. “To Dumile, The greatest husband, father, teacher, student, business partner, lover and friend I could ever ask for. Thank you for all the things you have shown, taught and given to me, our children and our family. Thank you for teaching me how to forgive beings and give another chance, not to be so quick to judge and write off. Thank you for showing how not to be afraid to love and be the best person I could ever be. My world will never be the same without you.”
Jasmine ended her note by also sending love to her late son, Malachi Ezekiel Dumile, who died in 2017 at age 14. “Words will never express what you and Malachi mean to me, I love both and adore you always,” the message concluded. “May THE ALL continue to bless you, our family and the planet. All my Love, Jasmine.”
Doom’s former label Rhymesayers shared a link to Jasmine’s post, along with this message: “With heavy hearts, we share these words from MF DOOM’s family.”
Dumile was born in London and moved with his family to New York as a child. Under the stage name Zev Love X, he co-founded the trio K.M.D. with his brother Dingilizwe, who went by DJ Subroc. Dumile first made Billboard’s charts as a member of K.M.D., which notched a pair of top 20 hits on Hot Rap Songs in 1991: “Peachfuzz” and “Who Me?” His brother’s April 1993 death in a car crash at age 19 caused Dumile to take a break from the industry before returning to rap in 1997 and adopting the MF Doom persona, modeled after Fantastic Four villain Doctor Doom. From then on, he always performed wearing his signature mask.
Doom may be best known for the 2004 album Madvillainy, which was recorded under the duo name Madvillain alongside producer Madlib and marked Doom’s first appearance on the Billboard 200 albums chart. The release also hit No. 9 on the Heatseekers Albums chart upon its 2004 debut. Madvillainy was chosen as one of Rolling Stone’s 500 Greatest Albums of All Time, and the album’s 10th-anniversary 2014 re-release returned to the Billboard 200 and peaked at No. 3 on Vinyl Albums.
Another of his high-profile collaborations was Danger Doom alongside DJ Danger Mouse (ahead of his Gnarls Barkley days) on The Mouse and the Mask, which was made in conjunction with Cartoon Network’s Adult Swim block. Doom was also featured on Gorillaz sophomore album Demon Days on the song “November Has Come.”
The enigmatic artist released his last full-length solo album, Born Like This, in 2009. Most recently, Doom hit No. 1 on Heatseekers Albums in April 2018 with Czarface Meets Metal Face, alongside Czarface. The acts collaborated for a second top 10 on the chart, the EP Man’s Worst Enemy, the following month.
There’s no word yet on Doom’s cause of death.
The latest chart reflects sales and streaming data compiled in the week ending Dec. 24, 2020. The trio’s third studio album concurrently arrives at No. 2 on the Top Latin Albums chart, becoming just the fourth regional Mexican effort to open in the top two on the all-Latin genre chart.
“Corta Venas is my favorite album because I feel all songs are good and reflective,” says Pedro Tovar, lead singer of the group. “This album is different because it has a variety of flows I would say that it is a combination of my two previous albums.” Tovar . composed 22 of the 24 tracks of the set.
Corta Venas was released Dec. 18 via Del Records. It earns 2020’s second-biggest week for a regional Mexican album in terms of overall units. It comes close to Eslabon Armado’s own Vibras de Noche which started with 2020’s largest week for a regional Mexican set: 23,000 equivalent album units.
Regional Mexican Albums ranks the most popular regional Mexican albums of the week in the U.S. based on multi-metric consumption as measured in equivalent album units. Units comprise traditional album sales, track equivalent albums (TEA) and streaming equivalent albums (SEA). In terms of streaming data, Corta Venas also takes the second-biggest streaming week for a regional Mexican album in 2020.
The set bows with 20,000 SEA, which equates to 31.6 million on-demand streams generated by the songs on the album. The group’s own Vibras de Noche spawned 32 million on-demand streams (chart dated Aug. 1).
As Corta Venas arrives, all three of Eslabon’s albums grab a spot on Regional Mexican Album’s top five: the new album at No. 1, Tu Veneno Mortal at No. 3 and Vibras de Noche at No. 4. It’s the only group to place three simultaneous titles in the same chart week in 2020.
“We feel more than happy to be back at No. 1. Thank you to the fans, God, my family and the Del Records company that supports and trusts my ideas,” Tovar says.
Four cuts off the set arrive on Hot Latin Songs, including one top 10. Here’s a rundown of Eslabon’s new arrivals to the list:
No. 10, “Ando Más Que Mal
No. 26, “La Mejor De Todas”
No. 28, “Mi Historia Entre Tus Dedos”
No. 47, “El Tiempo Nos Cambió”
Beyond its No. 1 start on Regional Mexican Albums and its No. 2 arrival on Top Latin Albums, Corta Venas also secures the trio their second entry on the all-genre Billboard 200 chart, with a No. 56 debut.
Mustard revealed via social media on Wednesday (Dec. 30) that he has been diagnosed with coronavirus.
Sharing the news with his 2.5 million followers, the DJ took to his Instagram Stories, writing, “Tested positive for covid send a prayer up for ya boy …” against a black backdrop.
The news comes about two months after the music producer married his longtime girlfriend, model Chanel Thierry, on Oct. 10 in a small backyard ceremony attended by Ella Mai, as well as the couple’s three children together.
Over the course of the year, Mustard added multiple tracks to his lengthy production catalog, including Pop Smoke’s “West Coast” featuring Tyga and Quavo; Ty Dolla $ign’s “By Yourself” with Jhené Aiko; and Megan Thee Stallion’s Popcaan-assisted “Intercourse,” from her long-awaited debut album, Good News. (In addition to being credited as a producer, Mustard is also listed as a featured artist on the latter two tracks.)
The record producer and DJ, born Dijon McFarlane, released his last solo studio album, Perfect Ten, in 2019. Featuring Migos collaboration “Pure Water,” “100 Bands” with Quavo, YG and Meek Mill, and the Roddy Ricch-assisted “Ballin’,” the LP earned Mustard his first top 10 hit on the Billboard 200, bowing at No. 8.
Meanwhile, Mustard coming down with coronavirus follows similar news from stars like Jeremih and Ashanti, with the former spending a week in the ICU in late November and the latter revealing her diagnosis on Dec. 12, just hours before her now-postponed Verzuz battle with Keyshia Cole.
The past year was tough, agonizing and unprecedented. But in terms of music, 2020 was our Latin year.
Despite the shutdown of touring, Latin music — defined as music performed predominantly in Spanish — recorded unprecedented consumption growth. It ended the year as the fastest growing genre in the U.S., according to Nielsen Music/MRC Data.
Globally, Latin over-indexed in YouTube charts and Spotify’s fastest-growing user base in the world was Latin America. According to the IFPI’s annual 2020 Global Music Report in April, for the fifth consecutive year, Latin America was the fastest-growing region in the world.
Beyond the stats, however, this was the year in which the world finally seemed to not only hear but also see Latin music, recognizing both beats and artists in unprecedented fashion. Of course, movements don’t happen in a vacuum. Here are the 10 news stories that shifted the lens for Latin music in 2020.
1. Jennifer Lopez and Shakira co-headline the first all-Latin Super Bowl Halftime Show (with Bad Bunny and J Balvin as supporting stars)
For the first time in history, every act on the stage was Latin, a momentous statement that underscored a unique moment in this nation’s history: One filled with divisiveness that this show sought to mend, but also, one full of diversity like never before. Performances were in English and Spanish, full of symbolism, messages and multicultural significance (among other things, the country was officially introduced to Colombian champeta). At the end of the day, Super Bowl ratings increased 1.7% over the previous year, according to Nielsen data, thanks in part, to the Spanish-language simulcast of the game, Fox said.
2. The Black Eyed Peas Go Bilingual (and top the charts)
It took a decade and a bilingual song in English and Spanish for what was once the biggest pop group in the world to get back on the top 40 of the Billboard Hot 100 chart. The Black Eyed Peas’ Spanish-titled “Ritmo,” featuring J Balvin, topped Billboard’s Hot Latin Songs chart and was the lynchpin for the bilingual Translation, the group’s first outing since Fergie’s 2011 departure.
3. Bad Bunny Scores, and Scores Again
Bad Bunny’s surprise album YHLQMDLG, released in February, came in at No. 2 on the Billboard 200, the highest debut ever for an all Spanish album. Not to worry. Nine months later, he upped the ante, debuting at No. 1 on the chart with El ultimo tour del mundo. It marked a first for Spanish-language music that few people thought could ever come.
4. And on the subject of Bad Bunny…
The Puerto Rican rap/trap star ended the year as the most-streamed artist globally on Spotify, also a first for an act who only performs in Spanish.
5. Maluma tops the Global chart
Billboard’s Global charts debuted in September with Maluma at the helm of the ex U.S. list with his all-Spanish “Hawái.” It was uncontested confirmation that Latin had become global. Two months later, The Weekend jumped on the song, singing in English and Spanish, also a first.
6. Maluma Goes to Hollywood
And on the subject of Maluma, the Colombian music star announced his stardom in a totally different realm, co-starring next to Jennifer Lopez and Owen Wilson in the upcoming feature film Marry Me. It is the most prominent role in Hollywood in at least 25 years for a Latin music star. Along the way, Maluma and Lopez graced the cover of Billboard.
7. J Balvin Gets a namesake MacDonald’s Meal
The fast-food giant chose Balvin as the second celebrity (following Travis Scott) to get a namesake meal since basketball icon Michael Jordan. Balvin also released a signature Nike Air Jordan 1 shoe. Both accomplishments underscore the commercial and marketing appeal of Latin acts.
8. “Dákiti” by Bad Bunny and Jhay Cortez Is the Most Listened-to Song in the Planet
Shortly after Maluma made his Global ex U.S. No. 1 debut, “Dákiti” — an all-Spanish reggaetón jam — came in at No. 1 in the overall global chart. It was another show of global power for music in Spanish.
9. Latin Billionaire Club
In the last week of September, Latin music, defined as music performed predominantly in Spanish, surpassed 1 billion streams in the U.S. in a single week for the first time. The appetite for Spanish-language music was finally in evidence in the U.S. as well.
10. Rosalía Lands Nike Deal and Snags ‘Vogue’ Cover
The rising Spanish star consolidated her global presence with a major Nike deal and commercial campaign as well as landing the cover of Vogue in America, becoming the first music artist who performs only in Spanish to do grace the cover of the fashion magazine.
Phyllis McGuire, the youngest member of the singing pop trio the McGuire Sisters, has died. She was 89.
Christine, Dorothy and Phyllis McGuire were famed for their synchronized dancing, sweet melodies and matching outfits and hairdos. They reached their zenith in the 1950s when they earned six gold records for hits including 1954’s “Sincerely” and 1957’s “Sugartime,” both of which reached No. 1, 1954’s “Goodnite, Sweetheart, Goodnite” and 1955’s “Something’s Gotta Give.”
The sisters had the distinction of performing for five presidents — Richard Nixon, Gerald Ford, Jimmy Carter, Ronald Reagan and George H.W. Bush — as well as for Queen Elizabeth II. They entered the National Broadcasting Hall of Fame in 1994 and the Vocal Group Hall of Fame in 2001.
Born in Middletown, Ohio, on Valentine’s Day in 1931, Phyllis Jean McGuire was the youngest daughter of Asa McGuire, a steelworker, and Lillie McGuire, a minister in the First Church of God. The sisters started performing together in public in 1935 at their mother’s church as well as at weddings and revivals.
“We’ve been singing together since I was four years old,” Phyllis McGuire told Vanity Fair in a 1989 interview. “We sang in the car, using the windshield wiper for a metronome. My sisters are the most incredible harmony singers. I can start in any key, and they pick it up.”
The group was discovered on local television and got a big break when they were whisked to New York to perform on CBS’ primetime variety show Arthur Godfrey’s Talent Scouts in 1952. Becoming regulars on sprawling radio and television variety programs hosted by Godfrey, Milton Berle, Andy Williams and Perry Como, the McGuire Sisters became national sensations.
They toured into the late ’60s, making a last stop on The Ed Sullivan Show in 1968, the year they broke up. Christine and Dorothy started families while Phyllis continued solo.
Phyllis attracted much more publicity than her sisters. She married radio/television announcer Neal Van Ells in 1952, divorcing him in 1956. But the FBI’s exposure in 1965 of her long-running affair with Chicago mobster Sam Giancana gained her unwanted media attention that impacted the group.
“It very definitely hurt our careers for about a year,” she said about her relationship with Giancana. “We were blacklisted on TV.”
Giancana was shot dead at his home in 1975. Despite a litany of showbiz friends from his Las Vegas days, she was one of few celebrities who attended his funeral. “The two great losses of my life were my father and Sam,” she said.
Their relationship was the subject of the 1995 HBO film Sugartime that starred Mary-Louise Parker as Phyllis, Larissa Laskin as Dorothy, Deborah Duchene as Christine and John Turturro as Giancana.
Outside of singing, McGuire tried her hand at acting, starring opposite her friend Frank Sinatra in the 1963 comedy Come Blow Your Horn.
The sisters got back together in 1986 to tour nightclubs and Las Vegas casinos, and in 2004 they performed on the PBS special Magic Moments: Best of 50’s Pop.
Dorothy died in 2012 at age 84, and Christine died in 2018 at 92.
This story first appeared on The Hollywood Reporter.