Consider a pioneer by many, the sudden death of respected, influential Hip Hop executive and manager Chris Lighty has the music industry reeling.
Lighty founded Violator Management and Entertainment and, alongside key involvement in innovative business deals, was a former manager of Mariah Carey, 50 Cent, P Diddy, LL Cool and Ja Rule among many others.
According to NY Daily News, Lighty died from a self-inflicted gunshot wound to the head outside his Bronx apartment after arguing with his ex-wife, with un-named law enforces suggesting Lighty, “may have been dealing with financial struggles, including owing about $5 million to the IRS.”
The tributes are pouring in online from musicians and industry colleagues.
“So very sad about Chris lighty..Great long time friend,fellow bronxite and peer…incredible businessman and person,” tweeted Jeff Robinson, CEO of MBK Entertainment [Alicia Keys, Elle Varner] and a friend and professional peer of Lighty.
“Its very sad..noone knows what pressures we all really have behind the masks put on for the public and even family and friends..” he adds; a concerned sentiment echoed by many this evening in reaction to the news.
R.I.P CHRIS LIGHTY THE MAN THAT SAVED MY LIFE!!!
— FAT JOE (@fatjoe) August 30, 2012
I Would Be Nothing Without YOU!!! My Kids Appreciate YOU God Bless Chris Lighty
— FAT JOE (@fatjoe) August 30, 2012
Rest in peace Chris Lighty. Your words and your vision are constant inspiration to me. Forever.
— Talib Kweli Greene (@TalibKweli) August 30, 2012
Chris Lighty was a pioneer in hip hop & the music biz period! He was a good man & a good friend. Prayers for his family & his children..
— OMAR EPPS (@omarepps) August 30, 2012
Shows how people you have love for u need to get up w/em or check N w/em because you never know.. Violator Baby Chris ( Lighty ) RIP
— Paragraph President (@PlugWonDeLaSoul) August 30, 2012
Chris Lighty was everything to me in my Flipmode years. So busy rescuing others sorry we couldn’t rescue you. You will be missed brother…
— Rah Digga (@therealrahdigga) August 30, 2012
So very sad about Chris lighty..Great long time friend,fellow bronxite and peer…incredible businessman and person
— Jeff Robinson (@thejeffrobinson) August 30, 2012
R.I.P chris lighty!! Chris is hip hop, a friend & a gr8 person! When I came in the game he acknowledged me … m.tmi.me/wg22p
— DJ Khaled (@djkhaled) August 30, 2012
I’m speechless. his kids,his family,Mike and David my condolences..This man was the 1 that I looked up to and always kept a cool poker face.
— SHA MONEY XL (@SHAMONEYXL) August 30, 2012
Still in shock.. More than just my manager but my family. Love you and gonna miss you Chris. R.I.P
— Diggy(@diggy_simmons) August 30, 2012
R I P to the kindest guy Chris Lighty. Thank you for being a manager to Diggy & a part of our family.. You are loved & will be missed
— Rev Run (@RevRunWisdom) August 30, 2012
My God…..my god…Chris Lighty…..Rest in Peace brother….
— 9th Wonder (@9thWonderMusic) August 30, 2012
R.I.P my manager Chris Lighty, I know you’re in a better place. this shit got me so fucked up big bro we just talked on the phone 2 days ago
— Soulja Boy (@souljaboy) August 30, 2012
R I P Chris Lighty SMH to the mongrels that have made the BLACKmusic industry a depressing game to drag such good cats into a pit of bullsht
— Chuck D (@MrChuckD) August 30, 2012
RIP Chris Lighty. Today, we lost a hip-hop hero and one of its greatest architects… bit.ly/SWcK8Y
— Russell Simmons (@UncleRUSH) August 30, 2012
Chris Lighty was a power player in this business. PLEASE lets see that we ALL need love, support and encouragement. WE HAVE2HOLDEACHOTHERUP
— Kelly Price (@KellyPrice4Real) August 30, 2012