The world received some sad news late Tuesday night that Phife Dawg, co-founder and member of the legendary rap group A Tribe Called Quest, passed away at the young age of 45. Phife Dawg was probably most known for his delivery and the lyrical wit and skill he brought to every track. He influenced so many artists during ATCQ’s success throughout the 90’s, as they put out multiple classics that still are and forever will be great to listen to. I wish I could write more about Phife and how great he was, but the remaining members of A Tribe Called Quest issued the following statement that shows just how special this man was to so many people:
“Our hearts are heavy. We are devastated. This is something we weren’t prepared for although we all know that life is fleeting. It was no secret about his health and his fight. But the fight for his joy and happiness gave him everything he needed. The fight to keep his family happy, his soul happy and those around him happy, gave him complete and unadulterated joy… until he heeded his fathers call.
We love his family his mother, his father, his son, his wife, his nieces, his family here in New York, Atlanta, California and Trinidad.
Thank you for the outpouring of prayers and support from the fans, fellow artists, music outlets, blogs, radio stations, DJ’s, social media and the music community at large. This too is part of his joy and means a lot to him. His family is overwhelmed by the support, well wishes and are thankful. His music and what he’s contributed is seismic and hard to measure. He’s affected us as much as he’s affected all of you. We’re inspired by his daily joy and courage. He wasn’t in pain. He was happy.
We take comfort in knowing he will be beside his grandmother.”
Today TBT honors Phife Dawg with some of the best songs from his incredible career. May he rest in peace and live through the music forever.