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Thursday, August 30, 2012

Hip Hop Music Producer Chris Lighty Dies In Apparent Suicide

Hip-hop executive Chris Lighty (pictured) has died from an apparent suicide. The native of the Bronx died today of a self-inflicted gunshot wound, according to various sources. He was found in the backyard of his Bronx apartment at 11.30 a.m. Thursday morning.

Lighty, the powerhouse behind Violater Records, guided the careers of hip-hop heavyweights like 50 Cent, Busta Rhymes and Missy Elliot.

He began his career working for DJ Red Alert and was a road manager for Boogie Down Productions. Lighty also managed groups like The Jungle Brothers and A Tribe Called Quest. He was given the nickname “Baby Chris” for his good looks and to distinguish himself from his older friend, Chris Ali.

While no one knows exactly why he put an end to his own life, the New York Daily News reports that Lighty, 44, has been dealing with financial issues, including $5 million to the IRS. TMZ is reporting that he and his ex-wife were involved in an argument before he shot himself.

According to Billboard, Violator came to prominence during the late 1990s under Lighty and former co-owner/president Mona Scott-Young. The company’s top albums include Violator: The Album (1999) and 2001′s Violator: the Album, V2.0., according to Billboard. Those albums lead to hits such as “Vibrant Thang” by Q-Tip and “What It Is” featuring Busta Rhymes and Kelis.

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