Tributes are pouring in for fallen rapper Riky Rick after the news of his death.
The rapper’s family confirmed his passing in a statement and said:
“The family of South African artist Riky Rick with profound sadness this afternoon confirmed his untimely passing.
“Son, husband, father, brother and uncle, Riky ‘Ricky’ Makhado (34) sadly passed away in the early hours of this morning (February 23) in Johannesburg.”
The cause of death is still unknown.
Mzansi has been in disbelief after the news broke with friends, fans and members of the local entertainment community sharing their condolences.
Riky Rick by Travys Owens— ✿ (@lelowhatsgood) February 23, 2022
CD & Styling by Bee Diamondhead
The passing of SA Hip Hop icon, Riky Rick is heartbreaking. I feel for his loved ones, especially his wife & children as they bear the brunt of losing their superhero & pillar of strength.— Tebogo Ditshego (@TebogoDitshego) February 23, 2022
His passing illustrates that some don't appreciate how the tongue can speak life or death. pic.twitter.com/C6K3AfsziE
We love you my man; we did not listen to your loud whisper. We thought we still had time, and unfortunately, we are now too late to intervene. 💔💔💔 pic.twitter.com/9Tj5otfYwv— Julius Sello Malema (@Julius_S_Malema) February 23, 2022
No no no no no no no no no 💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔💔🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕊🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯🕯— Madumane (@DjMaphorisa) February 23, 2022
In 2020, Riky spoke openly about suffering from chronic depression on an episode of his podcast series LAB LIVE with Yanga Chief after his dad died.
“I lost my father at a time when I needed the help. I lost him at a time when I needed that voice. A lot of people don’t understand that you can never replace the voice of a father... When he passed away, I was so angry, so upset,” he said.
Sharing that he would swing between depression and anger which would manifest in his music and he would take it out on others in the industry.
“My depression took form in being angry at the guys who were doing it.”
Riky burst on the local music scene with his debut album “Family Values”, released in 2015, that spawned hits such as “Sondela”, “Amantombazane” and “Boss Zonke”.
The album went on to be certified platinum by the Recording Industry of South Africa, selling over 50 000 units.
Since then he has become a fixture in the local music scene, starting his own label Cotton Club Records and also launching Cotton Fest, which is set to make its return this year following a one-year break in 2021 due to the ongoing Covid-19 pandemic.
Riky was also lauded as a fashion darling, breaking many barriers in the way he dressed, gracing the cover of GQ South Africa, Grazia and many more.
In 2019, the prominent music figure announced his partnership with Cognac brand Remy Martin for the Remy Producers SA series, and has been a brand ambassador ever since.