On Friday, Dec. 7, late rapper and singer XXXTentacion’s third studio and first posthumous album, Skins, was released, giving many listeners the chills. Several songs, including, “Guardian Angel” and “Train Food” in particular, paint a vivid picture of mourning someone, while also emphasizing murder. Considering the “Changes” singer was working on this project months before he was suddenly killed, it’s an unfortunate example of life imitating art.
XXXTentacion, born Jahseh Onfroy, died on June 18, 2018, in Florida, when two armed men shot him from a dark SUV in the attempt of committing an apparent robbery. The 20-year-old was last seen leaving a motorsports store that afternoon before he was killed. Now, nearly six months later, Skins almost gives the impression that X was intuitive.
In “Guardian Angel” the 20-year-old samples one of his own previous songs, “Jocelyn Flores,” which is about a friend who committed suicide. In this new take, he could simply be paying tribute to her again, calling her a guardian angel. But little did he know, this song would someday be what most-likely his loved ones felt when he died. “I guess I’m at a loss for words/ To feel so close to someone/ And for them to be gone the next day/ I guess you never realize/ How permanently damaging that is,” he spoke at the end of the track.
Meanwhile, “Train Food” depicts a more descriptive picture and it may make you think of how he died. In this song, X tells a story of himself walking, unable to escape a man who was after him. In a figurative sense, he could be personifying death and comparing it to the man chasing him. To listeners, it may sound like he’s telling a story of his last moments alive, making it even eerier.
“Now yo time finally up/ Ask yourself the final question/ ‘Is you goin’ down or up?’/ Recollecting all the moments that you never gave a f–k/ Now it’s here, death has now arrived/ Time’s finally up,” he sang, just as the last line hits an abrupt end.
During his life, his reputation was tainted with things like legal issues, violence, and false imprisonment, making him a controversial public figure. However, before his passing, he claimed he wanted to change for the better and also dropped several clues that may have foreshadowed his own death.
In his last Instagram live session, before he was killed, the artist took a moment to give fans advice and touched on his own death. “If worse thing comes to worst, and I f—ing die or some s—t and I’m not able to see out my dreams, I at least want to know that the kids perceived my message and were able to make something of themselves and able to take my message and use it and turn it into something positive and to at least have a good life,” he said.
— BUXI (@BuxiLife) June 18, 2018
“If I’m going to die or ever be a sacrifice, I want to make sure that my life made at least five million kids happy or they found some sort of answers or resolve in my life regardless of the negative around my name, regardless of the bad things people say to me.” Hopefully, that’s the case for his fans.
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