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Coolio's Children Didn't Always like His Songs — All about the Rapper's Kids & His Career

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Aug 03, 2022
12:00 A.M.
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Stating that his kids were not afraid to call his music “whack,” rapper Coolio shared a glimpse of his life and what it was like with four teenagers on the family reality TV show “Coolio’s Rules.”

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Through his reality TV show, “Coolio’s Rules,” the rapper provided the world with an inside look at his private life and the lives of his children. With millions of records sold worldwide, Grammy wins, and multiple platinum records, Coolio is an artist commonly known for his musical talent.

Coolio at the 1996 Nickelodeon Big Help in California on September 30, 1996 | Source: Getty Images

Coolio at the 1996 Nickelodeon Big Help in California on September 30, 1996 | Source: Getty Images

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Almost thirty years after its release, Coolio celebrated a milestone. His song “Gangsta Paradise” hit one billion views on YouTube; the record also appeared in the 1995 drama “Dangerous Minds.” Following the news, Coolio took to social media to thank his fans for their love and support over the years.

COOLIO’S CHILDREN

His children are some of his harshest critics. They were not afraid to mince their words, and they gave their father their honest feedback, even when it came to his music. Coolio said:

“Sometimes when I ask them (his children), ‘How do you feel about this song?’ And they will say straight up, ‘That’s whack.’”

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“Coolio’s Rules” starred four of his children - Artisha Ivey, Artis Ivey, Brandi Ivey, and Jackie Ivey - and viewers learned more about the kids and their famous father.

Coolio and his sons at the premiere of "The Santa Clause 2" in California on October 26, 2002 | Source: Getty Images

Coolio and his sons at the premiere of "The Santa Clause 2" in California on October 26, 2002 | Source: Getty Images

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In the reality TV show, the artist documented how he juggled being a musician, his business ventures, and being a father to many children. However, the show specifically featured his eldest kids from his first marriage.

Coolio’s decision to have his own reality show with his children came after his career experienced a decline. To revive it, he chose to film a show about his interesting family.

The show had the feel of a light-hearted sitcom, with scenes of his children laughing at his cooking and awkward daddy-daughter conversations about dating.

Coolio shared that he wanted to keep the family-focused series honest and authentic; it was all about giving his children the father he never had growing up. Coolio has six children in total.

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Coolio and his children at the NBC Universal 2008 Summer Television Critics Association Press Tour in California on July 20, 2008 | Source: Getty Images

Coolio and his children at the NBC Universal 2008 Summer Television Critics Association Press Tour in California on July 20, 2008 | Source: Getty Images

Although he didn't always approve of his father’s music, Coolio’s son, Artis, shared that overall he does find his father to be cool. The two are different - Artis is more calm and relaxed. As for his father, Artis admitted he can be the exact opposite, especially in public. He said:

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“I don’t like when he goes out in public and does little things. He’s very outgoing. He likes to be wild and flamboyant all in public. But I like to be calm. Other than that, my dad is pretty cool, though."

Growing up in Compton, California, the rapper goes by the name Coolio but was born Artis Leon Ivey Jr. In 1996, he married Josefa Salinas; however, they are now divorced.

It was during this marriage that he had Jackie, Artis, Brandi, and Artisha Ivey. Coolio also has two other sons with another woman who chose not to appear on the show.

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Coolio’s eldest son, Artis, had a run-in with the law in 2012. Artis was arrested on November 14 for allegedly breaking into an apartment in Vegas with a woman named Shantrice Wilkerson.

The pair forced the tenant of the apartment into the bathroom at gunpoint before robbing the home. Artis and Shantrice faced various charges, including robbery with a deadly weapon, first-degree kidnapping, and grand theft.

One of Coolio’s other sons, Milan Ivey, chose to follow in his father's footsteps and pursue a musical career. Milan performs under the pseudonym Pharaoh Santana. After graduating from New York University, the young musician has had a few shows across the United States.

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His other children live quiet lives in comparison to their other siblings. They have not had any high-profile scandals, and some chose not to appear in front of the cameras.

Coolio and his sons at the “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" premiere in California on November 13, 2002 | Source: Getty Images

Coolio and his sons at the “Harry Potter and the Chamber of Secrets" premiere in California on November 13, 2002 | Source: Getty Images

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Coolio was quite a strict parent and made a controversial statement when he shared that he believes children need bullies. If it were not for the bullies in his life, he said, the rapper could have wound up in prison.

The father of three daughters showcased his philosophy of tough love when he laid down the law about dating, warning any suitors not to expect anything from his girls. He recalled a story where he walked in on his daughter, Artisha, sitting on a boy’s lap. The rapper shared:

“I walked in the living room, and Artisha was sitting on some dude’s lap. I was like, ‘Oh, hell no.’ She just sat there, so I picked up one of the legs from the pool table and said, ‘You better get up right now.’ She was like, ‘I’m 20 years old!’ I was like, 'You better get yourself a 20-year-old house then!'"

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Coolio at the 2022 Parlor Games Celebrity Basketball Classic in Nevada on April 30, 2022 | Source: Getty Images

Coolio at the 2022 Parlor Games Celebrity Basketball Classic in Nevada on April 30, 2022 | Source: Getty Images

COOLIO’S CAREER

Coolio is a successful artist and received six Grammy award nominations in 1994, 1995, and 1996. Using his life in Compton and the struggles that came with it as inspiration for his music, Coolio has sold over 17 million records worldwide and has held concerts in Africa, across the United States, Asia, and Europe.

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His hit song “Gangsta's Paradise" won him a Grammy Award in 1996 for Best Rap Performance. However, over the years, he has not managed to emulate the same success.

Coolio performing at a college football game in Texas on October 9, 2021 | Source: Getty Images

Coolio performing at a college football game in Texas on October 9, 2021 | Source: Getty Images

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WHAT IS COOLIO DOING NOW?

Coolio is still making music, like a few rappers his age such as LL Cool J. As he approaches 60, the rapper has reportedly collaborated with Aslan frontman Christy Dignam on new music. Predicting the song would be a “banger,” Coolio shared his excitement to make new music.

Coolio is also doing live performances. In April 2022, he stepped out in a black Versace tracksuit as he landed in Sydney ahead of his show at Luna Park.

Although some of his children choose to live public lives while others have kept away from the limelight, “Coolio’s Rules” gave fans a sneak peek at the lives of Coolio’s four of six children and their superstar father.

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