ST. THOMAS — Miguel “Kiebo” Thomas, the father of Theron and Timothy Thomas of the global hip hop sensation R. City, and the inspiration of their massive 2015 hit “Locked Away,” died on Monday of cancer.
A social media post from the Thomas brothers, who hail from the Virgin Islands, acknowledged the public’s outpouring of support as “overwhelming.”
In a 2015 Rolling Stone article, the brothers said their father was not only their first manager but their gateway to hip-hop music. His time in prison and their mother’s devotion to him helped inspire the song “Locked Away,” which featured Maroon 5 singer Adam Levine, and became a Top 10 hit on the Billboard charts, according to the article.
The Thomas brothers were born on St. Thomas and grew up at the Oswald Harris Court housing community. Initially performing in front of small audiences for $50 or for no money at all, the brothers now write and produce music for some of the music world’s top artists.
In 2016, R. City were presented the territory’s first “key to the city.”