It was Method Man who kicked off the the DMX tribute on the 2021 BET Awards, rapping an acapella rendition of one of DMX’s most beloved verses. Then, Griselda Records took the stage to perform a snippet of their new song with DMX, “Hood Blues,” before a succession of X’s contemporaries and admirers, including actor Michael K. Williams, Busta Rhymes, and his own Ruff Ryders crew, including Jadakiss of The LOX, channeled his gritty energy to perform some of his biggest hits like “Ruff Ryders Anthem” and “Party Up.”
— ☥ Ѵ SHΛKTĨ ☥ (@RighteousRoar) June 28, 2021
— Opal Ellyse (@OpalEllyse) June 28, 2021
— Sisterly Kiss (@SisterlyKiss) June 28, 2021
DMX passed away earlier this year after an accidental overdose. He was in a coma for a week, during which his contemporaries and fans in the hip-hop world shared an outpouring of well-wishes. Eventually, after he’d passed, it was announced that Def Jam, the label where he’d released groundbreaking classics like It’s Dark And Hell Is Hot, Flesh Of My Flesh, Blood Of My Blood, and And Then There Was X…, put out his posthumous album Exodus, which was named for his son.
Meanwhile, his funeral was held at Barclays Center in Brooklyn, New York, with Def Jam footing the bill, where his casket was brought in on a monster truck, and the service featured performances from his daughter (who sang her own rendition of his song “Slippin’”) and the Kanye West Sunday Service choir. DMX’s longtime collaborator Swizz Beatz gave an impassioned eulogy, imploring the assembled mourners to “learn how to celebrate each other while we’re here.”
Watch the 2021 BET Awards tribute to DMX above.