The rapper, whose real name was Robert Ross, died from cardiac arrest on Saturday.

By Ruth Kinane
April 19, 2021 at 12:13 PM EDT
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Rapper Black Rob, best known for the 2000 single "Whoa!," has died at age 52.

Multiple social media posts confirmed news that the rapper — whose real name was Robert Ross — died at Grady Memorial Hospital in Atlanta on Saturday.

Black Rob's friend Mark Curry told The New York Times that the cause of death was cardiac arrest, adding that the rapper was also contending with multiple other health issues prior to his death, including lupus, kidney failure, diabetes, and multiple strokes.

Black Rob
Credit: Ben Gabbe/Getty Images

In his early twenties, Ross formed his first group the Schizophrenics, before becoming part of Sean "P. Diddy" Combs' label Bad Boy Records in the '90s. In 2000, he released his debut record Life Story, with "Whoa!" fast becoming a standout single. Life Story reached No. 3 on the Billboard 200 and later became certified platinum. Ross also appeared on P. Diddy's hit single "Bad Boys for Life" in 2001. In 2011, he signed to Duck Down for his third album Game Tested, Streets Approved. His final record Genuine Article came in 2015.

Black Rob
Credit: Jamie McCarthy/Getty Images

After Ross' death, Combs posted a tribute to his former collaborator on Instagram. Sharing a pic of the two together he wrote, "As I listen to your records today there's one thing that they all have in common! You have made millions of people all over the world feel good and dance! You are one of a kind! GOD BLESS!"

Former fellow Bad Boy rapper and Ross' friend, Curry, who was with Ross at the time of his death, also shared heartfelt messages on social media. "I don't know where to begin this, but I thank everybody for the donations," said Curry, who had also started a GoFundMe campaign for Ross to help cover his medical expenses, in a video shared on Instagram. "Rob passed away about an hour ago. I need for his daughter, Iona Ross, little Robert Ross, y'all get in touch with me, please."

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