2 d Newsdesk
Nas, Eve, and Swizz Beatz were among the hip-hop stars who gathered in Brooklyn, New York on Saturday to salute DMX at a special memorial.
The rapper, real name Earl Simmons, died on 9 April after suffering a heart attack following a suspected drug overdose, and this weekend, his loved ones headed to the Barclays Center to honour his legacy.
NBC reported the Celebration of Life event was closed to the public due to limited capacity as a result of the COVID-19 pandemic, but fans around the world were invited to watch the proceedings online – although they kicked off almost two hours later than planned.
Kanye West's Sunday Service Choir helped to get things underway with a gospel performance, including Keep On Movin' and Oh Lord, How Excellent. The rap superstar himself was noticeably absent, although he is said to have helped design the stage set up.
As DMX's red casket sat centre stage, his fiancee, Desiree Lindstrom, appeared with their four-year-old son, Exodus, and the rapper's other 15 children then paid tribute to their late father.
One particularly touching moment as one of DMX's daughters delivered a revamped version of his 1999 classic Slippin', turning the introspective song about DMX's troubles into a musical testimonial, crediting him with helping her in "growing, learning to hold my head up".
There were also stirring eulogies from Nas, who branded his Belly co-star his "brother" who became a "hip-hop icon", while Eve stepped up surrounded by fellow members of the Ruff Ryders collective to share her memories of her old crewmember and labelmate.
She said: "What I pray, what I hope, I pray to God, I pray to our angels, I pray to our ancestors that his journey was smooth. I know that he will rest in power, rest in love, but most of all he will rest in peace (sic)."
Ruff Ryders producer Swizz Beatz also honoured his close pal and shared his love for his family, but took aim at some unnamed members of the audience for failing to support the Party Up (Up In Here) hitmaker, who had long struggled with addiction and a string of legal issues, while he was still alive.
"I just wish all these people showed up for him when he was here…," Swizz said, pointedly. "He needed everybody when he was here. We gotta learn how to celebrate each other while we here (sic)."