Grammy-nominated rapper Nipsey Hussle shot dead at 33

Nipsey Hussle, the skilled and respected rapper who earned a Grammy nomination this year for his major-label debut, has died, authorities said. He was 33.

Nipsey Hussle has died aged 33. Credit:AP

Hussle, who was once signed to Sony's Epic Records, hit a new peak with Victory Lap, his critically-acclaimed major-label debut album on Atlantic Records that made several best-of lists last year, from Billboard magazine to Complex.

The album debuted at No. 4 on Billboard's 200 albums charts and featured collaborations with Kendrick Lamar, Diddy, CeeLo Green and more.

At this year's Grammy Awards, Victory Lap was one of five nominees for best rap album in a year that hip-hop dominated the pop charts and streaming services, and a number of top stars released projects, including Drake, Eminem and Kanye West.

Cardi B's Invasion of Privacy won the honour last month, while the other nominees were Travis Scott, Pusha T and Mac Miller.

"It's my debut album so for my first one (to be nominated) out the gate, it's like, it was overwhelming a little bit. It was … inspiring, humbling," he said in an interview with the Recording Academy on the 2019 Grammys red carpet.

Hussle attended the Grammys with his daughter. The rapper was engaged to actress Lauren London.

Hussle in March last year. Credit:AP

Celebrities mourned his death on social media Sunday, with NBA star Steph Curry tweeting, "God please cover and restore [Nipsey Hussle] right now!!!"

"This doesn't make any sense! My spirit is shaken by this!" Rihanna wrote alongside photos of Hussle with his daughter and fiancée. "Dear God may His spirit Rest In Peace and May You grant divine comfort to all his loved ones! I'm so sorry this happened to you [Nipsey Hussle]."

Snoop Dogg posted a video of himself and Hussle together on Instagram, and a second clip sending prayers to the rapper's family.

"Prayers out to the whole family man. This (stuff has) got to stop man," he said.

Outside of music, Hussle said he wanted to provide hope and motivation to those who grew up in Crenshaw like him, and pay it forward.

In a story published in February, Forbes wrote that the rapper and business partner Dave Gross purchased the Crenshaw plaza where his Marathon Clothing store is located, and had plans to knock it down and "rebuild it as a six-story residential building atop a commercial plaza where a revamped Marathon store will be the anchor tenant".

"Watching Nipsey inspired me to invest and own in our communities," Emmy- nominated actress Issa Rae, also from Los Angeles, wrote on Twitter.

AP

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