A$AP Yams visits BET's 106 & Park at BET Studios on July 15, 2013 in New York City.
John Ricard — Getty Images
January 18, 2015 10:20 PM EST

The brains behind Harlem’s critically acclaimed rap collective A$AP Mob, Steve Rodriguez — who was popularly known as A$AP Yams — has died.

The circumstances around Rodriguez’s death have not yet been made public. He was 26.

Yams was the co-owner of the A$AP Worldwide label, which helped launch and promote the careers of fellow A$AP Mob members, A$AP Rocky and A$AP Ferg.

“As one of the creative forces behind A$AP Worldwide, Yams’ vision, humor and dedication to the members of A$AP Mob will always be remembered. We extend our heartfelt condolences to his family and friends,” read a statement released by RCA Records.

The label executive kept a considerably lower profile than his peers in the collective, a position he appeared to enjoy.

“Rocky’s like Luke Skywalker, and I’m Yoda,” Yams told the New York Times during an interview published in 2013.

Members of the A$AP collective and fellow hip-hop stars aired their condolences via social media after news of Yam’s death surfaced on Sunday.

Contact us at editors@time.com.

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