Born Earl Simmons on December 18, 1970 in Mount Vernon, New York, the son of Arnett Simmons and Joe Barker, was raised in Yonkers, New York. Simmons went through a very abusive childhood that included multiple stays at group homes and frequent arrests dating back to as early as seven years old which was also the age that his mother first put him in a group home for doing drugs and being a common theft. He would often steal chains and gold watches and pawn them at the pawn shops so that he would have money to be able to survive. Earl's mother was also diagnosed with bipolar schizophrenia while he was a younger child she would often beat him and he would and would mistreat him. She sent his older sister off to leave with her mother while he was pregnant with Earl because she could not stand to have the both of them they drove her crazy. Earl didn't a lot of mischievous things some which he didn't understand he thought something was wrong with him he would later realize and find out that he suffered from a bipolar disorder and mania depression. If you know Earl or have heard his music then you can sense manic high optimistic and excessive talking energetic ways. Somedays he would go weeks without sleep and his drug habit didn't help much. He often would do crack cocaine as well as drink alcohol this would have him paranoid and he would think that people were plotting to kill him rob him and even kidnap him. He would often go through highs and lows he would have multiply mood swings and being in a group home sometimes he didn't know what was going on or how to control it.
Earl was known as a common beat boxer from the early years of 1988-1991Gabriel Grevenstuk from The Source magazine was the first to give Earl a shout out in his unsigned up and common column in his magazine. It was then that the his first demo in 1991 called unstoppable force and three little pigs In 1992, Columbia Records signed DMX to their subsidiary label Ruffhouse, who released his debut single "Born Loser".