As condolences continue to roll in from all over the music industry the legendary emcee, Phife Dawg of A Tribe Called quest(ATCQ), is being remembered all over the world for his unforgettable presence and powerful influence in the hip-hop world. On March 22nd, 2016 the news was delivered that Phife Dawg had passed away at the early age of 45, due to complications with his fight against diabetes. The emcee had been dealing with diabetes since the early 2000’s, so this was not a new situation, however I don’t think anyone could have predicted this so early. The other members of the group released a statement the following day saying, “We love his family, his mother, his father, his son, his wife, his nieces, his family here in New York, Atlanta, California and Trinidad. 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”. <!–more–>
Other huge stars such as Kendrick Lamar, Nas, Chuck D, and Mac Miller have all paid homage to the talented emcee. For a true example of just how influential Phife Dawg was on the hip-hop industry, take a look at the open essay written in Billboard by rapper Talib Kweli where he states, “Phife Dawg was authenticity in the flesh. Loyal to a fault and fiercely protective of this culture we call hip-hop, Phife embodies the very best of us. The Trini gladiator, the anti-hesitator — Phife will forever be a part of the reason for the music I love and make a living from. And for that, I owe him the world”.
It would be extremely difficult to jump into a conversation about authentic hip-hop without first mentioning the talented members of ATCQ. Combining flawless lyrical wordplay and storytelling with soothing jazz and soul samples, ATCQ embodies hip-hop to the fullest and some regard them to be the pioneers of getting a ton of new demographics interested into hip-hop. After multiple extremely well received albums and countless hit singles like “Can I Kick It”, “Electric Relaxation”, and “Scenario”, ATCQ managed to leave behind a legendary legacy and Phife Dawg himself has managed to leave behind a remarkable story and seemed to always live life to the fullest.
It’s a sad day for hip-hop fans all over the world as i’m sure his presence has been felt globally. Phife managed to touch the lives of a lot of people and for that his mark has been left in history. Phife managed to complete the ultimate human goal, even though his life may have come to an end, his music and his ideas will live on forever. For many that might be one of the greatest achievements we can ever achieve as human beings. Rest In Peace to the funky diabetic, one of the greatest emcees to ever live, Phife Dawg.