His health issues
Malik not only was going hard with his music career, but the rapper was also battling some serious health issues as well. During the year of his debut album with Tribe, 1990, Phife was diagnosed with diabetes, which he confirmed in “Oh My God” by calling himself “The Funky Diabetic.” His health decreased over the years, with him eventually requiring a kidney transplant in 2008 that was donated from his wife. Sadly, the transplant was unsuccessful, as Phife required another transplant by 2012.
His recent years
Phife recently reunited with his Tribe members this past year for the 25th anniversary of their debut album, and even did many interviews with outlets and radio stations including Sway in the Morning, as well as Hot 97. He revealed to the press that he was going to be releasing his own LP, Muttymorphosis, to the public, but never gave an official release date for the music. With his tragic passing, we can only hope that we’ll get to hear the new music in the near future to continue his legacy.
Hip hop will miss him
The legacy of Phife Dawg is unmatched, and should never be disregarded by the hip hop community. As one of the pioneers of the culture, he has left a huge mark on rap’s sound, swag, and concepts, and paved the way for tons of our most important rappers of today including Kendrick Lamar, J. Cole, and many more. From the bottom of our hearts, Phife, we thank you. You will truly be missed.