Lil Peep dead at 21


Written by Don't Panic
16 Thursday 16th November 2017

Lil Peep, the controversial emo-rapper has died aged 21 from a suspected and unsurprising overdose. More than just another rapper Peep was a very inclusive, loving person who stood up against racism, homophobia and sexism in the music industry. His music video for ‘Girls’ featuring Horsehead shows women of all types, including a poc trans woman.  He is thought to have overdosed before a show in Tucson, and posted a photo on Instagram hours before his death appearing to show pills or tabs on his tongue.

His manager Chase Ortega tweeted."I’ve been expecting this call for a year. Mother f**k,"

Condolences have flooded in from prominent figures in the music industry. "Peep had so much more to do," producer Diplo wrote, with radio DJ Zane Lowe adding: "So young. So sad." 

"Peep was the nicest person," wrote Dutch dance music producer Marshmello. "Hanging out with him, talking to him about music, the song ideas we were going to do together and touring was so amazing. Everyone will miss you man.Post Malone wrote: "In the short time that i knew you, you were a great friend to me and a great person. Your music changed the world and it'll never be the same. I love you bud. Forever."


The day of his death, he wrote on Instagram: "When I die You'll love me.” And we probably will. Taken before his time, the rapper will surely be deified much like his predecessors, Cobain, Winehouse etc. However his death should be seen as wake up call for the industry.

The lifestyle that Peep lead, along with other artists like Post Malone and Tyler Grosso glorifies drug use and romanticizes depression. It's a dangerous line for our public figures to be treading and puts many at risk. Recent years have seen pop song lyrics begin to conflate feelings of love or heartbreak with drugs or substance abuse. Now however, the trend is to go one step further and practice what you preach. Unlike the controlled lifestyles and images of Miley Cyrus and Rihanna artists like Peep give their fans carte blanche access to their hedonistic lifestyles via their Instagram accounts and his lyrics gave insights into his own depression and addictions.

Talking about depression on the public stage is an important step forward for society. Peep’s lyrics would have spoken to many lonely and confused people and made them feel less alone. But to many Peep's lyrics and lifestyle, along with many other rappers currently in the game, could be seen as aspirational. 

Hopefully his death will remind us that untreated depression has real consequences and that the people who connected with his music should seek real help, not try and find it in drink and drugs. Depression is a disease, it's not cool and should never be aspirational. 


If you're struggling with drug use or need advice you can talk to FRANK on 0300 123 6600 (UK). Whatever else you may be going through, you can call Samaritans on 116 123 (UK)


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