Rapper Mac Miller, who found fame early with his raucous, retro hip-hop but struggled with substance abuse and a painfully public breakup with pop star Ariana Grande, died Friday, officials said. He was 26.
The artist, who just a month ago released his fifth album whose new maturity and introspection won him once-elusive critical acclaim, was found unresponsive at his Los Angeles home by emergency personnel who pronounced him dead, the coroner’s office said.
His family confirmed his death in a statement, calling the rapper born as Malcolm McCormick “a bright light in this world for his family, friends and fans.”
Neither side revealed his cause of death, but the celebrity news site TMZ, which first reported the death, cited unnamed sources as saying he had overdosed on drugs.
Miller’s death comes several months after he ended a high-profile, two-year relationship with pop superstar Grande, who was often seen as the inspiration for his songs.
She guest-starred on his 2016 album “The Divine Feminine,” and a year later Miller — sporting his signature baseball cap above his tattooed neck — welcomed Grande on the airport tarmac when she returned to the United States following the deadly attack on her concert in Manchester.
In May, shortly after their breakup, Miller crashed his car and was charged with driving under the influence.
Grande at the time wrote on social media that she had long tried to help Miller become sober but described their relationship as “toxic” and said, “I am not a babysitter or a mother and no woman should feel that they need to be.”
Grande, who quickly became engaged to comedian Pete Davidson after splitting with Miller, did not immediately comment on the rapper’s death but blocked comments on her Instagram page after a slew of critical remarks.