The DMX Effect
By Jeremy "J-Jack" Jackson
Published April 9, 2021
As Earl Simmons' Family, as well as the Hip Hop Community, and many more around the World mourn on this day, April 9th, 2021, I couldn't help but have images of 23 years ago flowing in my head. It was 1998!! Questions in the Hip Hop world, of who would fill the HUGE voids left from the deaths of Legends, 2Pac and Biggie. And during that period of time, it was just as big of a question as to who would fill Michael Jordan's void when he retired from basketball. It was during this time, that wearing a Bandana with a Bald head immediately brung up questions of authenticity. Are they trying to be 2Pac? It was a constant question that surrounded many Artists from the more known Ja-Rule, also Krazy, to the lesser known Blak Haze. DMX quickly left that pack, and paved his own path as well as open the door wider for Younger Artists that came behind him.
DMX was an unknown Artist when I first heard him. As a fan of Hip Hop since the age of 8, I had been listening to Mic Geronimo. Even watched him on Mtv. It was on a track of Mic Geronimo's, that I heard DMX, along with Jay Z but at the time, I can still recall not the names not even popping out at me. I grabbed it because of Mic Geronimo. The song, dropped in 1995 and was called "Time to Build". Fitting name, with the effects of a Community that CAN and has helped each other in ways not many know of. It wasn't until LL Cool J's song "4,3,2,1", that I started wondering who was the one, that was so powerful that he ended the song that had LL Cool J, Method Man, and Redman, long standing Vets and Powerhouses, and basically made it his song?? Even as Canibus and LL's feud was birth thru the song, and even had Mike Tyson sorta get involved on Canibus' "Second Round K.O." adn all kinds of questions and even remixes to 4,3,2,1, with Master P, many were still asking, who is this D.M.X.? Then Mase dropped 24 Hrs. to Live and woa, song again pummeled by.... D.M.X. And soon after, quickly the L.O.X. dropped Money, Power and Respect and again...D...M...X!!!! The questions grew, the intensity seemed to grow. The appetite to hear more could be felt in almost every city where Hip Hop had a heartbeat. It was perfectly aligned that, in 1998 you could FEEL something GREAT coming. And then.... it HIT!!!! "Get AT ME Dog!!!"
The Imagery was near PERFECT!! The video was an istant and relatable CLASSIC!!! The Voice, the delivery, the rhymes paired with the imagery of the video, as a Live setting of a performance. An introduction to the world of sorts, that the fans in the crowd had already witnessed before the World did. From the minute it comes on, its high energy. Shows in the video, boiots knockin', DJ's, the CEO of Ruff Ryder to of course the fans. The DMX Effect had begun!! The rest is history, as in DMX becoming by June of 2014, the fifth best selling rap or Hip Hop Artist of the Nielson SoundScan era in the USA, Well over 23 Million sold THEN. I do believe he is STILL the only Rapper in history to have his first THREE Albums debut at number 1 on the Billboard 200 chart, two of which were in the SAME year. But the DMX effect spread to Movies with the CLASSIC "Belly" in which DMX Co Starred with the Hip Hop Legend Nas. The effect im speaking of is how fans were affected. How revenue for many involved in ANYthing that DMX was apart of. DJ's spinning the hottest tracks in clubs that had people dancing and paying to get into clubs. Producers, Promoters, Record Labels, featured Artists, Journalists, Movie theatres, and on and on and how the whole Hip Hop community is affected when an Artist is as Gifted and talented on the mic, as well as a personality as big as just about any musical ICON.!!! On April 9th, 2021 we mourn a Legend. Who battled demons and who prayed for Us all with the Angels. Someone who could go, where most preachers wont go. and would scream, Lord show me a sign, as his personal battles raged on and he fought with each step while the world watched and many criticized. That will forever be also, the DMX Effect!!! And if your human, its a battle that cant de denied. One that has been in affect, since the days of the stories we couldn't see but always believed like Adam and Eve!! But X!! We did see!! Let any Man or Woman, with no demons, no personal battles and no scars, toss the first stones. And it will be shown, that, that Man or Woman has not lived on earth nor dealt with the pains of the scars of Human history, that preceded their birth. Rest Up LEGEND!! D....M....X..... Mr. Earl Simmons.