Artis Leon Ivey Jr. (August 1, 1963 – September 28, 2022), known professionally as Coolio, was an American rapper. First rising to fame as a member of the gangsta rap group WC and the Maad Circle, Coolio achieved mainstream success as a solo artist in the mid-to-late 1990s with his albums It Takes a Thief (1994), Gangsta's Paradise (1995), and My Soul (1997). He is best known for his 1995 Grammy Award–winning hit single "Gangsta's Paradise", as well as other singles "Fantastic Voyage" (1994), "1, 2, 3, 4 (Sumpin' New)" (1996), and "C U When U Get There" (1997). From 1996 on, Coolio released albums independently, and provided the opening track "Aw, Here It Goes!" for the 1996 Nickelodeon television series Kenan & Kel. He created the web series Cookin' with Coolio and released a cookbook.