Malik Isaac Taylor, known as Phife Dawg from the legendary group A Tribe Called Quest, has reportedly passed away. News broke out early Wednesday morning when DJ Chuck Chillout sent out a tweet regarding the passing of Taylor. Producer/DJ Statik Selektah later then followed up to confirm the news.
There is no known cause of death as of yet, but Malik Taylor was very open about his battle with diabetes. The rapper also underwent a kidney transplant in 2008.
Phife Dawg was known for his stand-out verses on A Tribe Called Quest albums such as 1991’s The Low End Theory and 1993’s Midnight Marauders. Many fans have praised Phife for his unique punchlines, hilarious sports references, and was always said to be a good friend to many.
According to Peter Rosenberg of Hot 97, A Tribe Called Quest were to resume recording new music later this year, as well as celebrate the 20th year anniversary of their 1996 release Beats, Rhymes and Life.
Our condolences go out to Malik Isaac Taylor, his family and the A Tribe Called Quest crew.
RIP to phife dog of tribe called quest pic.twitter.com/f4t5fvg4WD
— DJ Chuck Chillout (@djchuckchillout) March 23, 2016
Confirmed. rest in peace Phife. Man. I'm out.
— Statik Selektah (@StatikSelekt) March 23, 2016
Just woke up to the news that my childhood hero and friend Phife from Tribe aka Malik Taylor is gone…I have no idea what to say .. Floored
— Peter Rosenberg (@Rosenbergradio) March 23, 2016