Earl Simmons (born December 18, 1970), better known by his stage names DMX and Dark Man X, is an American rapper and actor. In 1999, DMX released his best-selling album …And Then There Was X, which featured the hit single “Party Up (Up in Here)”. He has acted in films such as Belly, Romeo Must Die, Exit Wounds, Cradle 2 the Grave, and Last Hour. In 2006, he starred in the reality television series DMX: Soul of a Man, which was primarily aired on the BET cable television network. In 2003, DMX published a book of his memoirs entitled, E.A.R.L.: The Autobiography of DMX. DMX has sold over 30 million records worldwide, making him one of the best-selling hip-hop artists of all time.
DMX was born Earl Simmons in Mount Vernon, New York, the son of Arnett Simmons and Joe Barker, and was raised in Yonkers, New York. Simmons went through an abusive childhood that included stays at group homes and frequent arrests.
DMX is a Christian who reads the Bible every day. While in prison, DMX stated that he had a purpose for being there: “I came here to meet somebody…Don’t know who it was, but I’ll know when I see him. And I came here to give him a message. And that message is Jesus loves them.” DMX is currently a transitional deacon in the Christian Church and aspires to become ordained as a pastor, stating that he received this call in 2012.
DMX is the father of twelve children. He was married to Tashera Simmons in 1999 and they were married for eleven years. In July 2010, Tashera announced their separation (two weeks following DMX’s release from prison). DMX maintains that the two remain friends.
DMX had multiple extramarital affairs during his marriage to Simmons, some of which produced children. DNA testing confirmed that he is the father of at least two children; the first was born to Maryland resident Monique Wayne in 2004, the second to a different woman in late 2008. DMX and Wayne fought over her claim that he was the father of her son for years, during which she has sued him repeatedly for defamation of character, and for child support. After DNA testing proved DMX fathered Wayne’s son in 2007, he was ordered to pay her $1.5 million.
In an interview, DMX has talked about having bipolar disorder.
On July 30, 2013, DMX filed for Chapter 11 bankruptcy, citing his child support obligations as his priority claim. The filing was challenged by the Department of Justice’s bankruptcy watchdog trustee program, and was later dismissed by the U.S. Bankruptcy Court in Manhattan on November 11, 2013.