At some point your favourite rapper gave you the soundtrack to your life. They joined you on a personal journey.
So it’s almost like losing a member of your family when they eventually leave this realm. I’m pissed that I found out through an email blast this morning that Phife Dawg was no longer with us.
The news was on an email that was promoting some other tribute record which is pretty low, but this is the age of the net, there are no morals in the savage quest for hype. A very different place from era that Phife Dawg was from.
Phife Dawg, founding member of a Tribe Called Quest was one of the dopest MCs, from one of the greatest rap groups of all time. Together with Q-Tip and Ali Shaheed Muhammed they gave us some of the most revered hip-hop albums that have influenced the majority of MCs you hear today.
‘Peoples Instinctive Travels & The Paths of Rhythm’, ‘The Low End Theory’, and ‘Midnight Marauders’ are pivotal classic albums, there has been nothing else like them. They were more than music, they were a feeling, a way of thinking, a positive lifestyle. You can hear their influence across any album by Kanye West, Kendrick Lamar, J Cole, Anderson .Paak, Logic, etc.
Following their fifth album ‘The Love Movement’, they disbanded and went their own seperate ways
Years later when A Tribe Called Quest reunited for several shows, fans always hoped that they would release new music, but sadly it wasn’t to be. Phife Dawg passed away at 45 due to complications from diabetes.
I’m just thankful that I got to witness A Tribe Called Quest live on stage and grow up with their music. I was fortunate enough to interview Phife at the Rock The Bells tour in 08′ and even though he was clearly at odds with his health, he put on an amazing performance.
Alongside Q-Tip and Ali Shaheed Muhammed he taught us how to ‘Kick it’, to ‘Check The Rhime’ and not to get ‘Stressed Out’.
Forever on point, his beats, rhymes, and life lives on.
Thank you Phife Dawg.