Malik Issac Taylor better known as Phife Dawg from A Tribe Called Quest passed away last night, March 23, 2016 at the age of 45. His death was caused by complications from his long standing bout with diabetes. Phife was a founding member and one fourth of one of the most influential and groundbreaking groups in the history of hip hop. Playing in direct contrast to Q-Tip’s spiritual and worldly delivery, Phife rapped for the common man. Sports, shoes, women and being nice on the mic. The first rapper sporting the throwback jerseys that so many others took on years later. While many may consider Q-Tip the best emcee in the group, I think we can all agree that ATCQ wouldn’t have been the same without the 5 Foot Assassin.
We regret to share the news that on Tuesday March 22nd, 2016, Malik has passed away due to complications resulting from diabetes. Malik was our loving husband, father, brother and friend. We love him dearly. How he impacted all our lives will never be forgotten. His love for music and sports was only surpassed by his love of God and family.
A Tribe Called Quest Statement
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.
There are so many tributes, well wishes and condolences being submitted to Phife around the world. But right here in Atlanta, our morning traffic reporter Mark Arum might have the dopest.
Kendrick Lamar live from Australia last night
Rest In Power Malik.