The rapper and music executive was killed in a shooting outside a store in Memphis, a source tells Billboard.
On Wednesday afternoon (Nov. 17), rapper and music executive Young Dolph was killed in a shooting outside a store in Memphis.
According to FOX13 Memphis, the shooting took place outside Makeda’s Cookies, where police located Dolph and pronounced him dead on the scene. He was 36.
Born Adolph Robert Thornton Jr., Dolph became a huge success as an independent star on the Memphis rap scene after releasing his debut album King of Memphis in 2016. Since then, Young Dolph has scored three top 10 albums on the Billboard 200, with his 2020 Rich Slave project peaking at No. 4 on the chart. His albums earned a combined 2.6 million equivalent album units and sold 221,000 copies, according to MRC Data. His catalog tallied 3.9 billion on-demand U.S. streams, according to MRC Data.
Young Dolph also has two Billboard Hot 100 entries to his name: O.T. Genasis’ “Cut It,” featuring Dolph, in 2016 (No. 35, as well as No. 3 on Rap Airplay) and Gucci Mane’s “Stunting Ain’t Nuthin,” featuring Slim Jxmmi and Dolph in 2017 (No. 95). Last year, he scored a top 20 Rap Airplay hit with “RNB,” featuring Megan Thee Stallion.
Dolph also shined as an executive with the success of his Paper Route Empire and the rise of his protégé Key Glock. The two released several projects, with 2019’s Dum and Dummer and 2021’s Dum and Dummer 2 reaching the top 10 on the Billboard 200. Just this week, Glock debuted at No. 7 on the Billboard 200 with Yellow Tape 2.
Despite his wins on the artist and executive side, Dolph nearly lost his life several times in the past due to multiple shootings. In February 2017, more than 100 shots were fired at his SUV in Charlotte, North Carolina. He walked out unscathed and later released a song called “100 Shots” detailing the incident. Later that year, Dolph was shot in Los Angeles, where he recovered from three gunshot wounds.