Rapper MF DOOM dies for unsaid reasons


The death of MF DOOM, illustrated here, was announced this winter. Image courtesy of Adult Swim.

Rapper Daniel Dumile was announced dead Dec. 31 in an Instagram post by his wife. His official date of death is Oct. 31, but no cause of death has been stated as of yet.
Dumile, better known as MF DOOM, was a hip-hop and rap star, who constantly pushed the fringes of what rap and hip-hop were understood to be. Creating a comic book persona from the popular villain Dr. Doom, Dumile created an image wholly and uniquely his own. Along with that, he brought an exciting touch to every song he produced, created, sang or rapped.
Dumile was born in London, England July 13, 1971. His Zimbabwean father and Trinidadian mother moved the family to Long Island, New York, where he grew up. In grade school Dumile enjoyed learning about languages, different slang and etymologies, scrawling different kinds of words and mnemonic uses for them. He undoubtedly had a talent for noticing the way things sound and blend together, both unique and funny ways.
His music would be influenced by his Muslim upbringing, along with his love of comic books. With lyrics like,”Everything that glitters ain’t fishscale; lemme think, don’t let her faint get Ishmael,” or, “If we see tomorrow, the next day classes; the villain in the back with the X-ray glasses.” Of course, these are small examples, but the talent is easy to see. He took on the persona of the villain of rap.
Ironically, he became what some would call a “rapper’s favorite rapper.” He became the hero to many great influencers such as Tyler the Creator, who tweeted the day of the Villain’s announced death: ”safe travels villain” [sic]. Tyler’s not even close to alone in this love from the hip-hop world for Doom. Along with him, there’s JPEGMAFIA, ZEDS DEAD, FLYLO and even Kibbutzy Collins who said,”The year of the mask. Long live Doom” [sic].
His first rap group was KMD, which involved his brother, Dingilizwe, better known as Subroc in the group. His brother was later tragically hit and killed by a car April 23, 1993. This effectively ended the group and led Dumile to become an everyday working man until his breakout album under a new moniker.
Operation Doomsday by MF DOOM was fun blend of witty rhymes, intelligent social commentary and interesting comic aesthetics and sampling. The album quickly led DOOM to notoriety. He went on to develop even more highly regarded albums, such as MM…FOOD, a bustling album with enough food metaphors and jokes to bring anyone their fill.
But his most highly regarded album would most likely be Madvilliany. It was the Mark of Doom and Madlibs collaboration. Madlib is widely considered one of the greatest and most interesting hip-hop and jazz DJs and producers in the industry. Madlib and MF DOOM’s collab was one made in the heavens above. It was a great jazz fusion, hip-hop, rap record that delivered on every front most desired. Tracks like “Meat Grinder” and “All Caps” became instant classics, along with fun instrumentals. The entire album is a bright and bombastic take on the Villain’s sound.
All in all, MF DOOM is the metal-faced legend who will go down in history, wordsmith whose rhymes “is gorgeous.” MF DOOM left a deep impression on his fans, loved ones and the people around him. Take time to appreciate his tracks along with his fame. “Just remember ALL CAPS when you spell the man’s name.”