When Michael Jeffrey Jordan decided to shamelessly tarnish the absolute ending to a legendary sports career by returning to the Washington Wizards in September 2001, there was a collective feeling of excitement among the league and spectators alike. There was also a collective sense of realistic expectations.
Having been basking in retirement since 1999 after he crushed the Utah Jazz’s championship hopes for the second time, no one (in their right mind at least) expected MJ to pick off where he left off. The bigger narrative was the amount of good His Airness could rub off on the Wizards’ inevitable number one draft pick, Kwame Brown. The D.C. edition of Michael Jordan’s legacy still averaged 20 points per game but he was no longer looked upon as a leader as the NBA’s current generation, nor was he expected to be.
I say all this to say what’s happening to DMX in the current Hip Hop microscope is nothing but a detriment to his potential recovery and recording comebacks. As previously reported, I was live at the scene of Barclays Center for the Ruff Ryders 20th anniversary concert and can attest that some of what’s being alleged around social media about 46-year-old Earl Simmons is being embellished a bit.
Sure, a headline line like “DMX Was Slippin’ At Ruff Ryders Comeback” can speak to the countless Instagram clips out there but when The Dog burst onto the stage, he effortlessly flipped through the It’s Dark & Hell Is Hot “Intro” and “Some X Shit” without missing a beat. Too bad the soundman didn’t get the memo that the headliner needed to have an operable mic device. He knew the words to his songs. He rambled a bit. He went on a few diatribes. Such is life. Such is X.
The news of today (April 26) says X has decided to put his live show blitz on pause due to a “medical emergency” and his team is “concerned about his health” while there is an alleged relapse on the horizon.
We’ve seen the Drink Champs episode. Earl didn’t seem like it’s been a while since he’s had a couple shots. It was telling but not all that surprising. A DMX arrest headline on TMZ is even less alarming if not anticipated more than anything. Diehard fans should ask themselves an honest question: Have we ever seen a sober DMX? Like truthfully? Did we really expect him to be on stage quoting poetry or smelling like a rehab sofa? Is this …
Addiction Derailed DMX’s Once Incredible Career
Hip Hop culture has been infatuated with the comeback since LL Cool J boggled our minds and told us we couldn’t use that term in describing his. As of late, DMX has been guilty of teasing nostalgia with offerings such as “Bain Iz Back” like 1998 can just happen again without the power of a DeLorean complete with the nifty garbage fusion reactor. Once a standard is set, anything less tends to be less than civilized. Ageism in Hip Hop is a problematic issue when it comes to widespread attention but a turnout such as the one felt at Barclays last Friday proves there are still people willing to prove their allegiance with monetary support.
DMX needs that moral support.
Sometimes it feels like you wanna scrutinize how X made it, whether it be drugs, raw emotion or the perfect smattering of both. Sometimes it feels like I ain’t feelin’ you all. Sometimes you have to accept our rap heroes how they are and glass-half-full their contributions before there aren’t none at all. And pray for your boy.
He did for you on all his classic albums.