Hip-Hop Pays Tribute to A Tribe Called Quest's Phife Dawg

Empty Lighthouse is a reader-supported site. This article may contain affiliate links to Amazon and other sites. We earn a commission on purchases made through these links.

The legendary group A Tribe Called Quest was one of the greatest teams in hip-hop to ever be assembled.

Sadly Malik Taylor a.k.a Phife Dawg passed away at the age of 45 leaving behind a celebrated legacy of music with A Tribe Called Quest and his own solo ventures.

Rappers have begun paying their respects to Phife Dawg via social media.

"While the cause of death has yet to be announced, Taylor had had health issues for years, undergoing a kidney transplant in 2008 to deal with a longtime battle with diabetes," according to Rolling Stone.

Phife Dawg's talent shined brightly through A Tribe Called Quest hits like "Can I Kick It" and continued on to solo hits like "Flawless." After word of Taylor's death was made public, rappers all over took to social media to pay their respects.

Kendrick Lamar took some time out of his show in Sydney, Australia to pay respects to Phife Dawg and asked the crowd to help him do so as well in a chant (video below).

Swizz Beatz commented that he was sick over the loss of Taylor on Instagram, while Pittsburgh rapper Mac Miller shared his shock and remembrance on Twitter.

Miller also stepped into the producer alter ego Larry Fisherman to create a tribute to Phife Dawg titled, "5 Foot Assassin: Larry Fisherman Tribute."

A Tribe Called Quest celebrated their 25th anniversary with a rereleased version of People's Instinctive Travel and the Paths of Rhythm in November of 2015. You can check out some of the tributes and reactions to Phife Dawg's death below.

Rip King #phifedawg #tribe thx for the Epic vibes ...................I'm sick rite now!!!

A photo posted by therealswizzz (@therealswizzz) on

Phife forever 1970-2016. 1991 in Sept I went to visit Tariq at Millersville U in the middle of PA (Lancaster). Miles Davis had just passed & I went on a binge to study his post jazz works. Went to Sound Of Market to purchase Nefertiti, In A Silent Way & Live Evil---the only non jazz purchase I made that day ironically was the most jazziest album in that collection: #TheLowEndTheory by @ATCQ. ---it was raining that day so somehow the 1...2 punch of "Nefertiti"/"Fall" just had me in a trance that train trip---even though I suspected there was a possibility that Tribe could possibly have made a better album then their debut (the perfect @@@@@ mic Source rating would be on stands in a week so I was right)---but I knew I wanted to save that listening for when I got up to the campus w Riq.---so some 90mins later when I get to his dorm--we ripped that bad boy open (I can't describe the frustration that was CD packaging in 1991, just imagine the anger that environmentalists feel when all that paper packaging in Beats headphone gets wasted---it's like that)---the sign of a true classic is when a life memory is burnt in your head because of the first time you hear a song. ---Riq & I had this moment a few times, but the look on our faces when we 1st heard "Buggin Out" was prolly Me & Tariq's greatest "rewind selector!" moment in our friendship. (Back then every MC's goal was to have that "rewind!!!" moment. As in to say something so incredible. Or to catch you by surprise that it makes you go "DAAAAAYUM!!!"& you listen over & over---Malik "Phife" Taylor's verse was such a gauntlet/flag planting moment in hip hop. Every hip hop head was just...stunned HE. CAME. FOR. BLOOD & was taking NO prisoners on this album (or ever again) we just kept looking at the speaker on some disbelief old timey radio Suspense episode. & also at each other "Phife is KILLIN!"--by the time we got to "Scenario" I swear to god THAT was the moment I knew I wanted to make THIS type of music when I grew up--(yeah yeah dad I know: "go to Juilliard or Curtis to make a nice living at "real music") but he didn't know that Phife & his crew already wrote my destiny. I ain't look back since. THANK YOU PHIFE!

A photo posted by Questlove Gomez (@questlove) on