Coolio, the iconic American rapper, is being remembered fondly by a number of Irish personalities after he died at the age of 59 yesterday, September 28.
Coolio, famous for his 90s hit “Gangsta’s Paradise”, made a number of trips to Ireland throughout his career, appearing on some of the country’s most famous TV shows.
In 2002, Coolio appeared on the daytime chat show “Open House” to perform his hit “Ghetto Square Dance” with some of the Open House crew serving as backing dancers.
Marty Whelan, who hosted the show at the time, recalled the incident on Twitter and said he remembered Coolio with “great fondness”.
“Ah Coolio, I remember him with great fondness. To have him dancing with the staff was quite the moment. Which they did willingly. The very idea of introducing Coolio on afternoon television shows you how innovative RTÉ has always been,” Whelan wrote.
Ah Coolio, I remember him with great fondness. To have him dancing with the staff was quite the moment. Which they did willingly. The very idea of introducing Coolio on afternoon television shows you how innovative RTÉ has always been… https://t.co/bseUfubzok
— Marty Whelan (@martylyricfm) September 29, 2022
In another Irish appearance, Coolio appeared on the comedy talk show “Podge and Rodge” in 2009.
The show, which was anchored by two intentionally rude puppets, saw Coolio discuss his most famous hit song.
The official Podge and Rodge Twitter account remembered Coolio as a “sound man” in a post on Thursday.
— Podge and Rodge – Official (@OfficialPandR) September 29, 2022
Over the summer, the rapper was also pictured in Conor McGregor’s pub The Black Forge Inn in Crumlin during his most visit in addition to spending some time working with Dublin hip-hop duo Versatile. On Thursday, the Dublin pub paid tribute to their recent visitor:
Coolio’s lyrics have even made their way into Dáil Éireann, with Independent Donegal TD Thomas Pringle quoting “Gangsta’s Paradise” to criticize lobbying in Irish politics.
” Power and the money, money and the power. Minute after minute, hour after hour…”@Coolio might have been rapping about a “Gangsta’s Paradise” in 1995, but he could have been referring to Irish politics.#RipCoolio #Coolio pic.twitter.com/LjNQ6a7x1Q
— Thomas Pringle T.D. (@ThomasPringleTD) September 29, 2022
Coolio had a particular affection for Ireland’s capital city of Dublin. In one of the last interviews before his death, he told the Sunday World: “I usually stay in the centre where the action is.
“I like the atmosphere of Dublin. It’s an experience being in the centre. Not only do you run into a lot of Irish people, but you run into all other kinds of people from all walks of life and all kind of different countries. That helps me to write about all kinds of different subjects.
“I enjoy mingling with people. I’m not afraid. I’m not looking for a bunch of new friends or anything, but I definitely like associating with people.
“I’m one of those cats that doesn’t like to be alone. I get bored with myself. I don’t take myself that seriously.”
He admitted he was frequently recognized: ”Just walking down the street in Dublin, in the course of a day I’ll take at least 50 pictures.”
More recently, Coolio traveled to Dublin during the summer to work on a collaboration with Aslan frontman Christy Dignam on a new track.
“We’ve just got into it,” Coolio told the Irish Examiner at the time. “We’re working on a track. We haven’t even started writing any lyrics.”
He also told the publication that he loves Dublin so much that he frequently traveled there on days off while touring in Europe rather than returning to his home in Los Angeles.