Takeoff: Migos’s Quiet Genius, Who Left Us Far Too Soon

Takeoff was born on June 18, 1994, in Lawrenceville, Georgia, where he was raised with family members Quavo and Offset.

Although he began producing beats and rhythms in the seventh grade, he didn’t start making music professionally until 2011.

From left are Takeoff, Quavo, and Offset the trio make up the Migos: PHOTO/CREDIT

Genius cannot always be quantified or completely understood in real-time. It wasn’t until Takeoff abruptly — and tragically — left the globe that many music lovers realized how influential he and Migos were in modern hip-hop and pop culture.

KingMe, who wrote this moving ode to Kirshnik Khari Ball, better known as Takeoff, who was 28 years old, may have aptly captured the feelings of many hip-hop heads:

He claimed on YouTube that “Migos transformed the flow, the fashion, and the direction of hip-hop.” Sadly, it took Takeoff’s death for me to comprehend the enormous influence they had on culture.

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Offset, Takeoff’s bandmate, and grieving cousin took pains to let everyone know at his memorial service that Takeoff was the one who created the distinctive Migos style that changed hip-hop in the 2010s.

Takeoff and his impact on hip hop community

Between sobbing, Offset stated of the youngest Migos member, “He altered the culture of music forever.” “Take, you did it. You changed the flow. Take, the creator created this flow.”

Perhaps the hip-hop world did recognize Takeoff’s enduring contribution to the genre, based on the crowds that crowded both the inside and outdoors of State Farm Arena, home of the Atlanta Hawks basketball team, to see the quiet genius’ majestic sendoff.

Despite his reputation for being a wallflower when it came to public appearances, Takeoff drank from the cup of controlled occurrences and relative temperance behind his distinctive sunglasses — and the man missed nothing.

Takeoff unleashes the killer line that sums up who he is and what he is known for on the tune “Slippery” featuring Gucci Mane: “They believe I’m stupid/They think I’ve been sleeping a lot/They don’t know I see the plot/f— it, I see the knot.”

On Nov. 1, Takeoff was shot and died after a private party at the 810 Billiards & Bowling club in downtown Houston. Quavo and Takeoff were in town to celebrate Jas Prince’s birthday on Halloween, and everything looked to be going smoothly until that unfortunate dispute that led to the fatal shooting.

Takeoffs Tributes

A slew of musical dignitaries descended on the State Farm Arena to honor a member of one of the most influential groups in modern hip-hop history. Yolanda Adams, Byron Cage, Chloe Bailey, Justin Bieber, City Girls, Lil Yachty, Teyana Taylor, YG, and Mustard have helped introduce casual listeners to the multiplatinum-selling trio’s modest but powerful anchor.

Gucci Mane most emphatically did. “It’s been over ten years since I met you in my studio,” he remarked in the tribute song “Letter to Takeoff.” I knew you’d be a star right away. You have left some incredible memories that will endure a lifetime.”

Gucci rapped in the song:

“Just left another funeral, I shed a tear/I’m still in disbelief, I can’t believe it’s real,” he raps. “How the f— we gon’ lose Takeoff? Damn, he didn’t deserve it/We don’t supposed to question God, but damn, Takeoff was perfect.”

Five hundred miles south in Southern Louisiana, Baton Rouge’s Boosie Badazz acknowledged Takeoff’s magnificence while addressing hip-blatant hop’s disregard for life in the song “Rocket Man.”

No, it’s a roof but these stars say where my ceilin’ at/Can’t too many stitch Boss Mane on they fitted cap/Rappers used to be heroes, now they shoot us down like we free throws/Like killin’ a rapper the G Code,” he raps.

Before releasing the tune, Boosie voiced anger and worry for rappers who were formerly regarded as “heroes” rather than targets.

“This rapper s— whack, man. I don’t even want to be looked at as no rapper no more,” Boosie barked with a pained expression on his face. “I’m an entrepreneur, man. This rapper s— whack. They don’t want rappers to live, bro. Everybody want our place and s—. We in danger right now, boy. We used to be heroes.”

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