Takeoff leaves behind legacy in Atlanta rap



Takeoff, of Migos, arrives at the ESPY Awards in Los Angeles on July 10, 2019. A representative confirms that rapper Takeoff is dead after a shooting outside of a Houston bowling alley early Tuesday, Nov. 1, 2022. Takeoff, whose real name was Kirsnick Khari Ball, was part of Migos along with Quavo and Offset. He was 28. (Photo by Jordan Strauss/Invision/AP, File)

By Nick Glover, Lifestyle Editor

Early Tuesday morning, rapper Takeoff, one-third of the rap group Migos, was shot and killed outside of a Houston bowling alley.

Kirshnik Khari Ball, better known under his stage name Takeoff, was reportedly outside of the private party that was happening indoors. 

At age 28, Takeoff died of shots to the head and torso, according to the Associated Press.


Takeoff started rapping in 2008 with a few members of his family, his uncle Quavious “Quavo” Keyate Marshall and Marshall’s cousin Kiari “Offset” Kendrell Cephus, known together as Migos.

The trio were all raised together by Marshall’s mother in the suburbs of Atlanta, according to a Rolling Stone article.

Though they had been performing for five years together, the group did not make it big until their 2013 hit “Versace.” 

“Versace” is a fun trap song in which each member of Migos flaunts their wealth, affluence and opulence. 

The song took off when Drake remixed the song and added his own verse. 

From this success, Migos took this hit and ran. 

Using “Versace” as the lead single, Migos released the mixtape that brought them to rap prominence, “Y.R.N.”

Migos realized the brand they had built on “Y.R.N.” and capitalized on it. Flashy, dirty-south trap was their calling card.

Following this success, Migos released their next two big hits, the album “Yung Rich Nation” and the single “Look At My Dab.” 

“Yung Rich Nation” combines the work that Migos did on “Y.R.N.” with their two “No Label” mixtapes.

This album was followed up almost immediately with their biggest success to that moment, “Look At My Dab.” 

On “Look At My Dab,” Migos took the raucous fun that was on their earlier work and combined it with a culture trend: the dance move, the dab. 

The final piece of Migos’ discography is their trio of albums “Culture,” “Culture II” and “Culture III.” 

“Culture II” is the most popular album of the three, featuring the tracks “Walk It Talk It,” “MotorSport” and “Stir Fry”. 

The “Culture” series is a rap epic. In total, the three albums have an average length of an hour and 19 minutes. Compared to the quicker runtime of many modern rappers, this length is more than double that of many of other hit rap albums. 

Outside of Migos, Takeoff has one solo record and a collaborative album with Quavo that came out last month. 


Takeoff was known to be the quiet one in Migos. 

The best example of this is probably from their 2018 interview on the Breakfast Club radio show. Takeoff stood back and let the other two of the trio talk, occasionally throwing in ad-libs or one-line sentences.

Takeoff’s lyrical stamina, Southern fun-loving style and humorous tone stand above all rappers in the scene today.

His work with Migos is generation defining. They literally created the “Culture.” His solo work on the other hand is loud but soft, rambunctious but boastful. 

Takeoff built a role in the rap culture for a quiet, funny rapper to take the scene, and he left that role far too soon. 

Rest in peace, Takeoff.