Last month, the Atlanta hip-hop community was shocked by the sudden death of Sharon Benjamin-Hodo, the mother of OutKast’s Andre 3000. In a recent interview with HipHopDX, Andre’s fellow Dungeon Family member Cee-Lo Green spoke about the passing of “Mother Benjamin,” and stated that he hoped the tragic turn of events sparks something positive in his longtime friend. Having reunited with Goodie MOB, who along with OutKast helped launch Atlanta hip-hop onto the national stage in the mid-90s, Cee-Lo’s Dungeon Family affiliation is front-and-center yet again, and he spoke about 3000 turning pain into creativity.
“I’m hoping this really makes him angry enough to be artful again,” Cee-Lo said during the Los Angeles listening session for Goodie MOB’s Age Against the Machine album. “That’s what I want for him.”
Cee-Lo lost his own mother when he was only eighteen, and said that her death is what pushed him creatively. “When I lost my mother, I feel like I definitely took on her energy,” Cee-Lo explained. “I was not the same person. I took on her will. I pray and wish [Andre 3000] the same positive cause and effect. I hope he gets something constructive out of it.”
He also revealed that he could see the passing of Mother Benjamin as a window to future Dungeon Family projects, as the collective could rally around the tragedy.
“I think it’s very possible,” Cee-Lo said. “I think something’s going to be reborn because of it.”