We look back on Coolio's time in Southwest Michigan after he passes away at the age of 59-years old.

Coolio busted onto the pop scene back in 1994 with this debut hit "Fantastic Voyage."  Thanks to heavy airplay from MTV, BET, and radio stations all over the country, his first single peaked at #3 on Billboard's Hot 100 chart. The Compton, California rapper had a total of 6 Billboard Hot 100 Top 30 singles which include his 1996 hit "1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin' New)" which peaked at #5 and his biggest hit "Gangsta's Paradise" which stayed at #1 for 3 straight weeks after spending 38 weeks on the chart in 1995.

May 26th, 2016 - Wing's Event Center in Kalamazoo

Coolio was part of an incredible lineup for the 'I Love the 90s Tour' that stopped in Kalamazoo in 2016.  Salt n Pepa, Tone Loc, Young MC, Coolio, Color Me Badd, and All-4-One took the stage at Wing's Event Center that night.  All of the artists slayed that night.  However, Coolio stole the show.  This concert happened just one month after Prince passed away. Coolio did a Prince tribute.  To see Coolio perform "Purple Rain" along with a sax player in the place of the guitar solo absolutely captivated the crowd.  That was the night I realized that Coolio wasn't the artist I thought he was.  He was clearly much more.  While enjoying Salt N Pepa on the side of the stage, he took a moment to take pictures with fans including my fiance.'  He was super generous with his time.

Dana Marshall
Dana Marshall
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Dana Marshall
Dana Marshall
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December 29th, 2019 - Firekeeper's Casino Hotel in Battle Creek

Just before the pandemic hit the United States and changed all of our lives as we knew them, there was a concert in Battle Creek that had the crowd dancing in the aisles like it was a music video.  The 90s House Party at Firekeeper's featured C&C Music Factory featuring Freedom Williams, Coolio, Mark McGrath of Sugar Ray, and headliner Vanilla Ice.  Coolio had another face-melting performance with a full band and one of his sons as his hype man on stage.

Dana Marshall
Dana Marshall
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Artis Leon Ivey Jr. A.K.A. Coolio - August 1, 1963 – September 28, 2022.  We send our condolences to Coolio's 10 children and the rest of his friends and family.

If you have any photos with or of Coolio when he was in Southwest Michigan, please share them with us on our social media.

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