UK music scene pays tribute to rapper Ty who has died of coronavirus

The Mercury prize-nominated rapper was 47

Major figures from across the UK music scene have been paying tribute to Mercury prize nominated rapper Ty, who has died at the age of 47.

The Nigerian-British rapper died earlier today (May 7) from compications due to the coronavirus. His death was confirmed by one of his press team, according to The Guardian.

According to a fundraiser that was launched in early April, Ty (real name Ben Chijioke) was “admitted into the hospital with medical complications related to Covid-19. Shortly after, he was put in a medically induced coma to temporarily sedate to help his body receive the appropriate treatment”. He was moved out of intensive care in mid-April when his condition improved.

“I’m so sad about the news that @tymusic passed away today,” Gilles Peterson said in a tweet. “He was a huge part in the development of Hip Hop and spoken word in this country. An original no nonsense voice always sharp always witty. todays generation of rappers owe him a lot – a true gate opener. RIP”

Born in London in 1972, Ty released his debut album ‘The Awkward’ in 2001. He followed it up in 2003 with ‘Upwards’, which was nominated for the Mercury prize the following year alongside Amy Winehouse and The Streets – it was eventually won by Franz Ferdinand.

In 2019, Ty formed hip-hop supergroup Kingdem with rappers Blak Twang and Rodney P, releasing ‘The Kingdem EP’ the same year.

More tributes have come in from the likes of Ghetts, Roots Manuva, Blak Twang and more.

“Rest my Brother. You did good,” Roots Manuva said, while Ghetts added: “Ty fly high my brother.”

Blak Twang wrote: “KING “BENEDICT OBIOMA GODWIN EVERY LITTLE STEP IS A SOVEREIGN” Forever in my heart bro… Rest well my guy…. We were blessed with your greatness.”

Akala tweeted: “Rest In Power brother @tymusic we gonna miss you big bro. Love.”

See more tributes to Ty below.

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