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Rick James Update.


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Flamboyant funk musician Rick James had nine drugs in his system when he died suddenly in August, including cocaine, methamphetamine, valium and vicodin, according to a coroner's report Thursday.

James, 56, died in his sleep on August 6 in his Los Angeles home of a heart attack, but the drugs in his system likely contributed to the organ's failure, the report said.

James, best known for his 1981 hit "Super Freak," suffered from diabetes, had a pacemaker and had been in fragile health after a stroke in 1998. He had been hooked on crack cocaine and once proclaimed himself an "icon of drug use and eroticism."

His family attributed his death to natural causes, but the Los Angeles County coroner took over the case because James had not seen a doctor in recent weeks. An autopsy failed to establish the cause and toxicology tests were ordered.

The coroner listed nine drugs, including prescription medications for anxiety, pain relief and heart failure, along with cocaine and methamphetamine that were found in James's body.

"None of the drugs or drug combinations were found to be at levels that were life-threatening in and of themselves," the report said. It gave the cause of death as a heart attack and ruled the death accidental.

James, who received a lifetime achievement award in June, had recently finished recording an album and was in talks with Hollywood studios for a movie about his life.


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