LOS ANGELES, CA - JUNE 23: Nipsey Hussle performs onstage at the STAPLES Center Concert Sponsored by SPRITE during the 2018 BET Experience on June 23, 2018 in Los Angeles, California.

Nipsey Hussle (born Ermias Joseph Asghedom), was a rapper, entrepreneur, and community activist. He was known for his mixtapes, which he began dropping in 2005. The West Coast rapper released 14 mixtapes, including the Bullets Ain’t Got No Name series, The Marathon, Crenshaw, and more. Infamously Jay-Z bought 100 copies of Crenshaw for $100 each.

Nipsey achieved commercial success with his only studio album Victory Lap, which was released in 2018. The album was nominated for Best Rap Album at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards in 2019. The following year the Los Angeles native received two posthumous Grammy Awards. He won the awards for songs “Racks in the Middle” and “Higher.” They were awarded to the rapper in the Best Rap Performance and Best Rap/Sung Performance categories respectively.

RELATED: Nipsey Hussle's Killer Eric Holder Jr. Sentenced 60 Years For Murder

However, what made Nipsey stand out amongst the many successful rappers in hip-hop was his love for his community. One of his biggest accomplishments was the Marathon Clothing store, which he started with his brother Samiel Asghedom and Karen Civil through her Carless agency in 2017. While his Marathon Clothing store was his main claim to fame in his business ventures, he also created co-working spaces for people in the community to help creators and entrepreneurs. In order to create the spaces, he worked with a company called Gross to offer “flexible short-term leases, daily passes, monthly memberships, private offices, and custom build-outs” to residents in his community.

Unfortunately, his community of Crenshaw, along with millions of fans worldwide, suffered a great loss in 2019. On March 31, 2019, he was shot and killed by Eric Holder Jr. in front of his South Los Angeles clothing store. Eric Holder Jr. was sentenced to 60 years to life in prison for the murder of Nipsey in February.

Take a look at 13 quotes from the late Nipsey Hussle on hip-hop, love, and more below:

  • 1.

    “I realized the power of hip-hop. I realized how influential this music and this culture are.”Nipsey Hussle

    The Los Angeles native began his career in hip-hop with the release of his first mixtape Slauson Boy Volume 1. The project caught the attention of music executives at Cinematic Music Group and Epic Records, where the rapper later signed in 2009. He eventually ended up leaving the following year after his debut project was delayed.

  • 2.

    “Success or greatness come with a roller-coaster ride… anybody can apply the marathon concept to what they do.” Nipsey Hussle

    The Marathon is the name of his clothing store in Los Angeles. It is also the name of his 2010 album. It also served as a phrase the rapper would use as motivational purposes throughout his music and life.

  • 3.

    “Being self-made means never making an excuse as to why you can’t take steps toward whatever your goal is.” – Nipsey Hussle

    One of the many accomplishments Nipsey Hussle left behind was his store, The Marathon. He sold clothing such as t-shirts, sweatpants, hats, and more. The physical shop located in Los Angeles has now been closed and remains a memorial for the rapper.

  • 4.

    “‘Victory Lap,’ even the title. It’s the accumulation of trial and error; that’s what I represent; trial and error.Nipsey Hussle

    “Victory Lap” was another phrase that the rapper often used to encourage his fans. The phrase was also the title of the only studio album that he ever released. It was nominated for Best Rap Album at the 61st Annual Grammy Awards.

  • 5.

    “At the core, one of my original goals is to redefine what the streets expect.” – Nipsey Hussle

    It was no secret that the rapper had gang ties. He was a member of the Rollin’ 60s set of the Crips street gang. However, he was still an advocate for his community. His murder led to the Crips and Bloods marching peacefully together for the first time 27 years in a tribute to the late rapper.

     

  • 6.

    “I always had faith in my creative capacity.”Nipsey Hussle

    Nipsey was able to accomplish a lot of creative endeavors in his 32 years of life. One of his largest accomplishments was opening up Marathon Clothing. His family announced last year that they will be opening up another store in Los Angeles.

  • 7.

    “My safe place to be emotional is the booth.”Nipsey Hussle

    During his music career, Nipsey released one studio album, Victory Lap. The album was released in 2018, one year before his tragic death. Prior to the studio album, the rapper created 14 mixtapes that were released from 2005 to 2017.

  • 8.

    “It’s important to love in hip hop.”Nipsey Hussle

    Before his death in 2019, Nipsey was in a long-term relationship with actress Lauren London. They share one son together, Kross. Despite earlier reports saying that they were engaged or married, TMZ confirmed through his death certificate they the late rapper never was married.

  • 9.

    “I knew ‘Crenshaw’ had elevated me and distinguished me.” Nipsey Hussle

    One of Nipsey’s life missions was to give back to his community. “Growing up as a kid, I was looking for somebody — not to give me anything — but somebody that cared,” he told the Los Angeles Times in 2018. “Someone that was creating the potential for change and that had an agenda outside of their own self interests.”

  • 10.

    “I got an album concept called ‘Exit Strategy,’ that might be one of my last ones. It’s a term they use in business when you build companies. You create an exit strategy as you make a company. You don’t wait till you’re five years in it; you create an exit strategy as you make the company.”Nipsey Hussle

    Nipsey was planning to release another studio album with the potential title of Exit Strategy, as he told Complex. He added that the potential project would have been “more of a chapter one to something new.” There were reports of a potential posthumous album in 2021 but nothing has since materialized.

  • 11.

    “My career as Nipsey Hussle is based on my life as Ermias Asghedom.” Nipsey Hussle

    While Nipsey had a lot of titles: rapper, entrepreneur, community activist, to name a few, he also had great pride in his heritage and valued his family. Nipsey was of Eritrean descent. He also had two siblings: Samiel Asghedom and Samantha Smith. The rapper had two children: daughter Emani who he shares with Tanisha Foster and son Kross who she has with Lauren London.

  • 12.

    “Sometimes you have to take two steps back to take ten forward.”Nipsey Hussle

    “Hussle” was in his name for a reason. It wasn’t until 2018 the rapper gained commercial success but while he was in the period of releasing mixtapes and connecting with his fans and community on a real level he never gave up. Unfortunately, his career was cut short when he was murdered.

  • 13.

    “I hope my story inspires everyone out there to keep hustling and chasing their dreams.”Nipsey Hussle

    One of the major draws of being a Nipsey Hussle fan was his authenticity. He came from a humble background and while he was leveling up he always made note of who was there from the beginning. While his physical presence on earth is no longer, his legacy will be not only of musicality but of the nurture and care he gave his community and hip-hop. As always, the marathon continues.

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