Pam the Funkstress, a member of the trailblazing Oakland hiphop group the Coup, died this past week, according to Rolling Stone. She was 51 years old.
Her death was confirmed by Bay Area radio station KBLX, who also noted she died of organ failure following a recent organ transplant surgery.
“The KBLX Family would like to send our love, prayers and condolences to the family and friends of Pam Warren, AKA Pam the Funkstress, The Turntable Queen, who passed away on Friday,” the station said in a statement. “She was one of the finest DJs on the planet, a true legend, and she was family! Information about public services will be forthcoming. We will miss you Queen.”
Born Pam Warren in the Bay area, she grew up with the goal to become the first female DJ on the West Coast, she told the San Francisco Chronicle. After gaining a popular following in the 90s as party DJ, she was recruited by Boots Riley of the Coup in 1994. In 2016, she became Prince’s personal DJ after auditioning for him. “Purple Pam”, as Prince called her, ended up DJing for him in the final months of his life.
Our prayers are with her friends and family during this difficult time.