A Tribe Called Quest’s Phife Dawg Dies at 45

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Malik Taylor, a.k.a. Phife Dawg, a member of the pioneering rap group A Tribe Called Quest, died Wednesday, according to reports. He was 45 years old.

The manager of A Tribe Called Quest member Q-Tip confirmed the death in an email to TIME.

The cause of Taylor’s death has yet to be announced. He had battled diabetes for years and underwent a kidney transplant in 2008, according to Rolling Stone, which first reported the news.

The group, composed of Q-Tip, Phife Dawg and Ali Shaheed Muhammad, has been called one of the best rap groups of all time by many critics. From 1990 to 1998 they recorded five albums with breakout hits like “Bonita Applebum” and “Can I Kick It?”

The group reunited to tour the country in 2006. They appeared on The Tonight Show With Jimmy Fallon last year.

Phife Dog was honored on Twitter Wednesday by Questlove, Chuck D and other musicians.

[Rolling Stone]

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Write to Eliana Dockterman at eliana.dockterman@time.com