DJ Arafat, a popular Ivory Coast singer with a large following in French-speaking Africa, is dead after a motorcycle accident, according to BBC.
Reports of DJ Arafat’s death broke on August 12, 2019. He was only 33-years-old and was reported to have died on Monday, August 12. The singer’s real name was Ange Didier Huon. He had millions of followers on his social media accounts, which fans are now flooding with expressions of grief.
Prominent news outlets shared the below video that appears to show the collision. Although it’s far away and grainy, be aware that it will be traumatic to some because of the moment it captures (if you click on the link in the tweet below, the story starts with the video).
Here’s what you need to know:
1. DJ Arafat’s Motorcycle Collided With a Car, Reports Say
The cause of death stemmed from a traffic collision. According to BBC, the singer was riding a motorcycle when it collided with a car.
The Ivory Coast singer was taken to a hospital in Abidjan, where he died of a “fractured skull,” BBC reports.
The state broadcaster RTI also tweeted news of the death, writing, “Death of the artist DJ ARAFAT by his real name Houon Ange Didier this Monday, August 12 at 8 am, following a traffic accident that occurred on the night of Sunday, August 11 in Abidjan.”
DJ Arafat’s management team also confirmed his untimely death to CNN.
2. DJ Arafat Released 11 Albums in His Lifetime
DJ Arafat leaves behind a prolific body of work despite his untimely death. According to France24, he was responsible for 11 albums.
They consist largely of a dance music style called “coupé-décalé.” France24 describes that style as “combining choppy rhythms with hip-hop-style vocals.”
He received accolades for his work, being named best artist of the year at the Coupé-Decalé Awards in 2016 and 2017. You can see his website here.
3. Top Officials Expressed Condolences
Ivorian President Alassane Ouattara offered a tribute to DJ Arafar on Facebook.
“It is with great sadness that I learned of the premature passing of Houon Ange Didier ‘DJ Arafat’ Youth Icon and ambassador for Ivorian music and culture. I extend my sincere condolences to his mother, his children, his biological and artistic families as well as to all his fans. My prayers are with them during this painful ordeal,” Ouattara wrote on Facebook.
One of those offering condolences to DJ Arafat was Ivorian Culture Minister Maurice Kouakou Bandaman, who said a tribute was being organized, France24 reported.
“He was Ivory Coast’s best musician,” said Yves Jay Jay, his spokesman, to CNN.
4. DJ Arafat’s Parents Were Involved in the Music World
DJ Arafat’s music has roots in his family. Both of his parents were involved in the music industry.
His father was a sound engineer and his mother was a singer and both were well-known, according to AFP.
DJ Arafat got his start as a DJ in Yopougon, Abidjan. According to a translation of an article in RFI Musique, “DJ Arafat is the son of Pierre Houon musician and sound engineer and Tina Glamor.”
5. DJ Arafat Posted About Motorcycles on Instagram & His Last Post Was Just Hours Before the Crash
On Instagram, DJ Arafat posted pictures of motorcycles. He also featured motorcycles in his music; one of his hits, Moto Moto, dealt with just that.
His last post came just hours before his death. It advertised an appearance at a club.
He was born in Cocody, Ivory Coast, according to The Sun. Other purported videos flying around on social media, such as one supposedly showing DJ Arafat’s wife getting the news, and one supposedly showing him doing a wheelie, have not been verified.