One of the founding members of A Tribe Called Quest, Phife Dawg, died Wednesday (March 23) at the age of 45, reports Rolling Stone.
While the cause of death has yet to be announced, Phife, born Malik Taylor, had struggled with health issues for years. He was diagnosed with Type 1 diabetes and underwent a kidney transplant in 2008 after experiencing renal failure due to complications with the disease.
A Tribe Called Quest was formed in the late 1980’s by Phife, Q-Tip (Jonathan Davis), DJ Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Jarobi White. Taylor appeared on all five of the group’s studio albums that were recorded between 1990 and 1998, including The Low End Theory (1991) and Midnight Marauders (1993). The group broke up and reunited multiple times since the release of their last album, The Love Moment (1998).
#RIPPhife began trending on Twitter as leaders of the hip-hop community paid tribute to the late MC:
Rest in Peace Phife Dawg— Big Sean (@BigSean) March 23, 2016
Rest In Beats PHIFE ATCQ Forever pic.twitter.com/jwYNU6YLJ8— Chuck D (@MrChuckD) March 23, 2016