Malik Taylor, the rapper known as Phife Dawg whose nimble, clever rhymes helped launch A Tribe Called Quest to both commercial and critical success, died Tuesday at the age of 45 from complications resulting from diabetes. Rolling Stone has confirmed the rapper’s death.
Taylor had had health issues for years, undergoing a kidney transplant in 2008 to deal with a longtime battle with diabetes. “It’s really a sickness,” Taylor said in Beats, Rhymes & Life, Michael Rapaport’s candid 2011 documentary on the group. “Like straight-up drugs. I’m just addicted to sugar.”
“Malik was our loving husband, father, brother and friend,” his family said in a statement. “We love him dearly. How he impacted all our lives will never be forgotten. His love for music and sports was only surpassed by his love of God and family.”
“Family, my heart is shattered at the loss of my beautiful son,” Taylor’s mom Cheryl Boyce-Taylor wrote on facebook. “Thank you for your love and good wishes. Malik made me so proud, and he was a good and humble son. What holds me is that he brought joy through his music and sports, and that he lived a magical life. He is with his beloved grandmother and his twin brother Mikal today. God bless you Malik Boyce Taylor. Please send prayers to my daughter-in-law Deisha.”
Our sincere condolences go out to Phife’s family. He’s a legend and will be missed!!
Pop The hood on this Tribe Called Quest classic.
Let’s be real. The West Coast is killing it on the musical tip right now. Artist after artist is making noise and this is one of our personal favorites. Do your ears a favorite and introduce them to Caly Nate straight out of Pasadena by way of Minnesota. Pop the hood and let us know your thoughts.
Download the entire album Truly Yours…Inspired by True Events here.
After being cast as Jay Z’s mistress in several tabloid stories, the rapper known only as Liv has come forward with her take on Jay’s infidelity in a song called “Sorry Mrs. Carter,” a song disputing the allegations but still apologizing to Beyoncé. It remains somewhat unclear what exactly she’s apologizing to Beyoncé for. Not sleeping with her husband? Jay Z’s supposed bad behavior with other women?
In the less-than-four-minute song that samples Outkast’s “Sorry Ms. Jackson,” Liv switches messages several times, all the while fitting in as many Bey/Jay song references as she can squeeze in. There’s also an Aretha Franklin “Respect” reference.
Bey and Jay’s rumored divorce is perhaps the biggest gossip story of the year, and it sounds to us like Liv is trying to capitalize off of it.
Liv, girl. You need to be apologizing for this song’s quality, because this is beyond horrible. You couldn’t be that cool with Jay Z and put out a song this bad. We would’ve believed you if you said you were Lil’ Scrappy’s sidepiece, but Jay? This blatantly disrespectful!
These THOTs don’t know how to stay in their lane!
Samsung announced during Sunday’s NBA Finals game, Jay-Z’s new album Magna Carta Holy Grail, will be available through an app to 1 million Galaxy phone users on July 4, three days before the general public will be able to buy it.
Samsung paid $5 million for the rights to give away digital versions of the album, according to the Wall Street Journal. People primarily buy smartphones about once every two years on regimented schedules, so Samsung isn’t going to drive many sales from this specific promotion. Instead, it’s hoping that the next time someone’s contract is up, she’ll remember that Jay-Z exclusives are the kind of thing she can expect to hold over her iPhone-toting friends if she buys a Galaxy phone. This isn’t the first time Samsung has attempted to lure people toward its phones with the promise of music. But at this point there are few artists more iconic than Jay-Z. (He wouldn’t have been Steve Jobs’s first choice, though.) Also, as we’ve pointed out in the past, Jay-Z and Samsung just seem like a good fit.
Companies that peddle mobile devices are all after ways to offer exclusive content. The richness of Apple’s (AAPL) app store gave it a huge advantage over competing smartphone platforms in the early days of Android. (Microsoft (MSFT) is paying developers directly to make apps for its platform in an attempt to catch up.) Apps have the advantage of being a profitable business, because the companies that run the platforms take a cut of the revenue from sales. But distributing digital content isn’t about making money. This explains why Apple and Google (GOOG) have been keen to get into the distinctly non-lucrative world of streaming music. Phone carriers are also looking to music as a way to promote their networks; MetroPCS now offers to bundle subscriptions to Rhapsody, the streaming service, into customers’ monthly plans.
“Music, increasingly, has to be part of a broader strategy,” says Benedict Evans of Enders Analysis. “It’s tough to make it work as a stand-alone business.”
You don’t have to tell that to businesses like Pandora (P)and Spotify, which are bleeding cash and fighting tooth and nail to reduce their royalty payments. But Apple and Google see their streaming music services much in the same way that Samsung sees its Jay-Z deal, says Evans. For the tech giants, it’s worth taking this loss to be the ones doling music out.
Pop the Hood on Jay Z’s promo
New music straight out of Long Beach, and you heard it here first. A good friend of NoUaintRadio told us to take a listen to this new mixtape by NAMEBRAND and we’re hooked. You will be too! Don’t say we never put you up on anything….. Download this mixtape for Memorial Day Weekend!
Download: Namebrand – The G.R.E.A.T. Tape (Mixtape)