Chris Lighty: Hip-hop entrepreneur
Friday 14 September 2012
Chris Lighty, who died on 30 August aged 44, having apparently killed himself, was a hip-hop mogul who managed Sean "Diddy" Combs, 50 Cent and Mariah Carey, helping lead the way in making money for pop stars outside music. "As music sales go down because kids are stealing it off the internet and trading it and MP3 sales continue to rise, you can't rely on just the income that you would make off being an artist," he said.
Born in the Bronx in 1968, he was one of seven children raised by a single mother in one of the housing projects there. He was taken on by the Def Jam co-founder, Russell Simmons, then in the 1990s he formed his own management company, Violator Records, named after a Bronx gang of which he had been a member.
He soon began to make money for his clients, securing a Gap advertisement for LL Cool J. He cut similar deals for the likes of A Tribe Called Quest, Busta Rhymes and Missy Elliott, while for 50 Cent he negotiated what turned out to be one of the most lucrative deals in the history of hip-hop, with Vitamin Water. When the company was sold to Coca-Cola for $4.1bn, 50 Cent received $100m.
Lighty was found in his New York apartment with a shot to the head; he was going through a divorce and had been having financial and personal problems.
- 1 The scientist who takes 100 drugs a day so he can live to 150
- 2 The Visit: Trailer for M Night Shyamalan's latest horror film is terrifying
- 3 Company breaks open Apple Watch to discover what it says is 'planned obsolescence'
- 4 The confessions of men who ordered mail-order brides
- 5 General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
General Election 2015: Tories sack candidate who said she would never support 'the Jew' Ed Miliband
9/11: Iranian General accuses US of organising September 11 terror attacks
General Election 2015: Stephen Hawking says he will vote Labour
Yazidi sex slaves undergoing surgery to 'restore virginity' after being raped by Isis militants
Australian student Tommy Connolly, 23, adopts his pregnant, homeless 17-year-old cousin to give her a chance at 'a better life'
General Election 2015: Chuka Umunna on the benefits of immigration, humility – and his leader Ed Miliband
The sickening truth about food banks that the Tories don't want you to know
Aaron and Melissa Klein: Oregon anti-gay bakers ordered to pay $135,000 after refusing to make cake for same-sex wedding
Andrew Lloyd Webber: Phantom of the Opera writer mocked after issuing a warning about Ed Miliband and Nicola Sturgeon
General election 2015: Labour will toughen hate crimes legislation surrounding Islamophobia
EU exit would hit UK economy much harder than neighbouring countries, study finds
£18000 - £50000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This company is recruiting for ...
£20000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This B2B software supplier, spe...
£22000 - £29000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: This fast growing SaaS (Softwar...
£18000 - £25000 per annum: Recruitment Genius: A position has arisen for an ex...