Malik I. Taylor a.k.a Phife Dawg The 5 ft. Assassin, who’s clever rhymes helped to launch hip-hop legendary group, A Tribe Called Quest, to both commercial and critical success has passed away at the age of 45 due to complications from diabetes. The rapper had health issues for years and even underwent a kidney transplant in 2008. It is sad to know that yet another icon of hip-hop is gone. ATCQ has released a statement in regards to the news:
“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.