Fans reflect on drug abuse and depression after the death of rapper SoundCloud


Not responding on his bus after a drug overdose, emo rapper Lil Peep died three weeks ago, impacting his fans and the music community.

But for some, his death was not a surprise. Lil Peep's fan base, which extends to more than 448,000 followers on SoundCloud, knew the lyrics of her songs, which frequently referred to the use of Xanax, among other drugs, and her lifelong struggle with depression.

places it among the 11.5 million Americans over the age of 12 who abused prescription pain medications last year, according to the Mental Health and Substance Abuse Services Administration.

The Centers for Disease Control reports that 91 Americans die each day from opioid abuse. [19659002] Following the death of Lil Peep, not only fanatics and notable artists such as Post Malone expressed their regret, but Ariel Alexander, a social worker, said they had started a conversation about the need to take seriously the cries of help present in rap music.

"His lyrics were totally tracks," said Alexander, a fan who discovered Lil Peep's music through SoundCloud. "If someone talks about wanting to die, they probably need to talk to someone."

Alexander said Lil Peep's mix of emo and rap resonated with young listeners because his music echoed typical teenage struggles, such as loneliness. [19659002] In his song "Praying To The Sky", Lil Peep hits, "I found a Xanax in my bed, I took that shit, I went back to sleep, they'll miss me when I'm dead, I'll lay my head down and rest in peace." [19659007] "I think there is a tendency in this genre to use self-medication for mental health problems," Alexander said. [19659002] James Gorczyca is a metal rapper with 535 followers on SoundCloud. He said that both his music and that of Lil Peep share heavy and instrumental sounds. The death of the rapper, he said, made him reflect on what listeners thought about Lil Peep's drug use.

"People who listen to their music and take Xanax believe that it is part of the culture," said James Gorczyca. "They do not see that when (Lil Peep) does it, it can mean something darker."

As someone who takes antidepressants on his own, Gorczyca said that his abuse is a forgotten topic of discussion in music. Sometimes music itself encourages its abuse, he said.

"Music does not help the Xanax culture … this guy really needed help," said James Gorczyca. Although Lil Peep has 1.9 million followers on Instagram, "it's not someone you can talk to about your problems."

Anthony Gorczyca, a computer science student and James' older brother, said during the Thanksgiving break that he noticed how sad James had overcome the death of Lil Peep.

Anthony Gorczyca said Lil Peep is an example of a person who suffered common teenage problems in an unfortunate way.

"This is a broader problem," said Anthony Gorczyca. "Fans need to learn not to repeat their mistakes."

Lil Peep, born Gustav Ahr, grew up on Long Island, New York. He told numerous publications that he had trouble fitting in during school, and he admitted battles with drug abuse and suicidal thoughts.

After leaving high school, he started looking for music, loading songs on SoundCloud. Lil Peep then grew to fame and has over 35 million views on YouTube for her music video, "Awful Things."

"His death brings a lot of discussion," said Anthony Gorczyca. "He lived the lifestyle of a rock star."

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