Phife Dawg, born Malik Taylor, was a founding member of Hip Hop pioneers A Tribe Called Quest, along with group members Q-Tip, Jarobi White, and Ali Shaheed Muhammad. On March 22, 2016, Phife’s relatives revealed in a public statement:
“We regret to share the news that on Tuesday March 22nd, 2016, Malik has passed away due to complications resulting from diabetes.”
He was only 45 years old. It’s been three years now since the Hip hop community, as well as his friends and family, lost Phife, but his legacy lives. Phife has been honored with a renaming of Linden Blvd in Queens to Malik “Phife Dawg” Taylor Way. ATCQ dropped their last album as a group, the platinum-selling We Got It From Here… Thank You 4 Your Service in November of 2016, featuring verses from Phife.
Phife Dawg’s wild sense of humor and lyrical style will forever be missed in the Hip-Hop community. Dave Chappelle revealed Phife’s death was a main reason for him hosting Saturday Night Live.