Besides writing one of the most well-known rap songs of all time, Coolio was also a father and married to his ex-wife Josefa Salinas for four years. He was also in a long term relationship for over ten years with TV personality Mimi Ivey, whom he dated from 2012 until his death, though not exclusively. With the sad news that the rapper died at 59 years old on Wednesday, September 28, HollywoodLife is recounting the rapper’s marriage and relationships. Coolio’s label Casual released a statement mourning his loss. “We are honored to be a part of Coolio’s musical family. Coolio is a legend who has inspired a generation of artists to unapologetically share their visions with the world,” they said. “We are beyond grateful Coolio shared his talents with us, and at the same time, we are extremely saddened to be a bookend on his amazing musical journey.”
Mimi herself finally spoke out on his death in an interview with the Daily Mail on October 3. “I just remember all of the air and life coming out of my body,” she told the outlet. “I was outside, getting ready to take my son to football practice. All I remember was dropping to my knees. I collapsed.” She also shared the positive memories. “We were best friends,” she said. “We would talk about everything and joke and laugh about everything. There was never a dull moment being with him.”
Find out more about Coolio’s marriage and relationships here.
Coolio And Josefa Were Married From 1996 To 2000
While Coolio had multiple relationships throughout his life, his only marriage was to Josefa. She was a Los Angeles-based radio personality who eventually crossed over into a management role and helped her then-husband with her music career. She was also the author of the book 101 Things To Know Before You Date My Daughter, My Best Friend Or Me.
Josefa also appeared alongside her then-husband to speak about a mobile studio project for an interview on The Roseanne Show in 1998. Before introducing her, Coolio shared her many accomplishments and gushed about Josefa. “She is a mother. She is my manager. She is my friend, and she’s my homegirl,” he said.
They Had Four Children Together
With the news of Coolio’s death, many outlets have reported that he had four children with Josefa. The rapper starred in the reality show Coolio’s Rules on the Oxygen Channel along with his four kids, but reports about the show at the time said that he had two more children who had declined to take part in the show, per The Seattle Times. The rapper had also been honest about his kids occasionally not enjoying his music. “Sometimes when I ask them, ‘How do you feel about this song?’ And they will say straight up, ‘That’s whack,'” he revealed.
Coolio Was Also In A Longterm Relationship With Mimi Ivey
While Josefa was his only marriage, Coolio was also in a serious relationship with Mimi Ivey. Their relationship was featured in a number of different reality shows. The pair were featured in a 2013 episode of Celebrity Wife Swap, where the rapper switched partners with Sugar Ray frontman Mark McGrath, per Yahoo News. Mimi opened up about how the show affected her in a 2020 interview with Where It Begins. “Although I loved Coolio with all my heart I was not happy with the state of our relationship at that time. Especially after seeing it from a different perspective,” she said.
The couple appeared on the series Love Goals, which aired in 2020. The couple worked through problems in their relationship on the show. “I knew I had a hard time trusting men but I never knew it was a reoccurring factor from my childhood trauma,” she told WIB. “I’ve learned so much about myself and my man that’s helped us both grow in ways we might not have been able to if we had not done the show.”
Who Else Has Coolio Dated?
While his marriage to Josefa and relationship with Mimi are probably his most well-known, there are also news reports involving Coolio and a past relationship with women named Anabella Bellesi and Anabella Chatman, but it’s not clear if this is the same woman or just two women coincidentally sharing the same first name. It was reported that Bellesi had filed paperwork asking a court to enforce the rapper to pay child support in 2010, per TMZ. Coolio was also arrested for allegedly pushing and punching Chatman during an argument, according to TMZ.