UPDATED 4/4, 2:45 a.m.: Bliss Nightclub has issued a statement containing an apology and some background.
“Our deepest condolences to Goonew’s family, friends, and fans,” the club stated to XXL. “Bliss was contacted by a local funeral home to rent out our venue for Goonew’s home-going celebration. Bliss was never made aware of what would transpire. We sincerely apologize to all those who may be upset or offended. Please keep Goonew’s family and friends in your prayers at this difficult time. Respectfully, Bliss DC.”
See original story below.
During what was apparently being publicized as a “final show,” the body of deceased Maryland rapper Goonew appeared to have been propped upright at a club gathering in Washington, D.C.
The corpse of the MC—who was shot and killed in March at 24 years old—was seemingly presented onstage during a viewing at Bliss Nightclub, adorned with a crown and designer clothing. Multiple people in the club could be seen standing around the stage, taking photos, and playing music. An entry pass for the event called it a “celebration of life” for the MC, whose real name was Markelle Antonio Morrow.
As XXL points out, it remains unconfirmed if the body was Goonew’s or a wax figure, but a rapper at the event named Black Fortune claimed it was “no wax figure.”
“As long as his mother was happy that’s all that matter,” he wrote on Instagram
The Prince George’s County Police Department announced Goonew’s death, saying he was shot at 5:45 p.m. in District Heights, Maryland on March 18. A $25,000 reward is available for information that leads to an arrest of a suspect in the shooting.
“Once on scene, they located an adult male suffering from a gunshot wound,” the department wrote. “The victim was taken to a hospital for life threatening injuries. At approx. 7:30 pm, the victim was pronounced dead.”
The young MC created a lengthy discography for himself, with 2017’s Certified Goon, 2018’s Big 64 and Goonwick, 2019’s Back from Hell, and 2021’s Short Temper. Goonew was previously shot in 2019, and wrote, “I Ain’t Never Show This Pictures But July 5th Last Year They Told My Mother I Was Dead I Came Back…I’m Blessed & Thankful I’m Still Here.”
In 2020, he was listed as a Pigeons & Planes Best New Artist, and spoke about his then-latest single “Bricks” and his creative process.
“Me and Sparkheem, my producer, made ‘Bricks’ in 25 minutes,” Goonew told P&P. “It’s way easier when your producer knows you and the music that you like to sample. Gucci is one of my favorite rappers and I’ve always put together freestyles in my head to beats that he’s done, so making this was easy. It’s one of my favorite songs that I have put out.”