Lil Peep, an emerging singer, rapper and YouTube star whose debut full-length album dropped in recent months, has died. The Long Beach, New York-raised emo/hip-hop artist (real name Gustav Åhr) was just 21 years of age. Reasons for his passing have not been revealed, though British broadsheet The Guardian cites a suspected overdose.
Peep’s manager Chase Ortega broke the news. “I’ve been expecting this call for a year. Mother fuck,” he tweeted.
Sarah Stennett, CEO of First Access Entertainment, who partnered with Peep in early 2016, released a statement about his death.
“I am shocked and heartbroken,” Stennett wrote.”I do not believe Peep wanted to die, this is so tragic. He had big goals and dreams for the future which he had shared with me, his team, his family and his friends. He was highly intelligent, hugely creative, massively charismatic, gentle and charming. He had huge ambition and his career was flourishing.
“I have spoken to his mother and she asked me to convey that she is very, very proud of him and everything he was able to achieve in his short life. She is truly grateful to the fans and the people who have supported and loved him.”
Lil Peep had a promising career in front of him. His star had been on the rise since 2015 via a series of Soundcloud tracks, EPs and mixtapes, and he enjoyed full traction through his YouTube channel where his videos to “Awful Things,” “Benz Truck,” “The Brightside” and others clocked up multiple millions of views As the buzz built, Peep signed with agent Cara Lewis and enthusiastic features followed in Fader, Noisey and Pitchfork, which declared him as “the future of emo”. In an extensive three-part profile, Medium wrote, “it’s obvious Peep is going to blow up.”
All the while, the conversation rumbled on about whether he was a rapper or a singer. Was he hip-hop or emo? Peep showcased all those skills on his debut album, Come Over When You’re Sober, which dropped on Sept. 1.
The Peep army was a growing one, as fans tuned in en masse for his refreshing candor about his battles with depression, heartbreak, drug use and his sexuality.
A slew of recorded artists paid tribute to the young performer, from Post Malone to Marshmello, Rich Chigga and many more. “Peep was the nicest person. Hanging out with him, talking to him about music, the song ideas we were going to do together and touring was so amazing,” tweeted Marshmello. “Everyone will miss you man.”
Billboard has reached out to reps for Lil Peep. More to come.