Billie Eilish hails XXXTentacion as “tortured genius” after defending controversial rapper

"I think it’s still popular because he was a complete tortured genius."

Billie Eilish has controversially described XXXTentacion as a “tortured genius” after previously defending the late rapper.

The singer paid tribute to the late rapper on the first anniversary of his death earlier this year and also responded to critics who questioned her decision to mourn his passing.

The controversial rapper, whose real name was Jahseh Dwayne Onfroy, was shot and killed in Florida in June 2018. He was 20-years-old.  Onfroy had a history of domestic abuse charges, including the aggravated battery of a pregnant woman and false imprisonment.

In an new interview with XXL, Eilish described Onfroy as a “tortured genius”.

“I think it’s kind of unfair when something gets more popular after someone passes,” she said. “I remember in the midst of it, at the beginning, when I found him on SoundCloud. I had no idea who he was or anything about his backstory at all. I barely knew what he looked like. I just messed with what he was creating because it wasn’t something I had heard before.

Billie Eilish

Billie Eilish

Eilish continued: “It was a mix between, you know, all types of shit. And that was without me having any knowledge of anything in his life: who he was, who he knew, anything at all.”

She added: “I think it’s still popular because he was a complete tortured genius.”

Meanwhile, Eilish recently unveiled the latest music video for her single ‘I Love You’. She returns to the UK to perform at Reading & Leeds Festival next week. Check out the stage times here and full weather forecast here.