Rap artist and actor Earl Simmons, known by his recording alias Dark Man X (DMX), hails from Yonkers, New York, U.S. He has sold more than 30 million records worldwide.
Simmons got his start in music as a beatboxer in the late 80's. He collaborated with hip hop artists Ja Rule, Jay-Z, and LL Cool J on a few of their songs in the 1990's, and finally produced music independently through label Def Jam Recordings in May 1998. The album "It's Dark and Hell Is Hot" exploded on the charts reaching No. 1 on the Billboard 200 in the U.S. The single "Get at Me Dog" was the most popular single on the album. Simmons sophomore album "Flesh of My Flesh, Blood of My Blood" which came out the same year, also charted at No.1. The single "Slippin" was the first song to chart in the UK. He is the only other hip hop artist to have two albums that have come out in the same year to reach No.1 besides Tupac. Simmons joined Jay-Z and Method Man on the Hard Knock Life tour shortly after.
DMX's most notable single "Part Up In Here (Up In Here)" from his album "...And Then There was X" jumped to the Top Ten chart of R&B hits. The album dropped on 21 December 1999 and has been certified platinum nine times worldwide. It is his bestselling album and his fastest produced album (recorded in under a month).
Simmons' fourth and fifth albums "The Great Depression" released in 2001 and "Grand Champ" in 2003 also achieved mainstream success, debuting at No. 1. DMX is the only hip hop artist to have five consecutive albums reach No.1. DMX is also known for his acting abilities with roles in films like "Romeo Must Die" and "Belly." He admitted on his reality TV show "DMX: Soul of a Man" that he wants to be a preacher when he retires from rapping. His artist name refers to the Oberheim DMX drum machine used in the 1980s.