The late A Tribe Called Quest rapper spent the last 15 years of his life in Oakland, where his wife is originally from.
The late Phife Dawg has been honored with his very own day in Oakland, California.
Oakland has declared May 17 “Phife Dawg Day” following an event that honored A Tribe Called Quest in San Francisco, according to HipHopDX. Phife’s mother, Cheryl Boyce Taylor, his widow, Deisha Head Taylor, and producer Starita (who engineered Tribe’s last album We Got It From Here… Thank You 4 Your Service) were present at the event. The honoring was a part of a tribute event dubbed A Tribute To A Tribe Called Quest’s Midnight Marauders.
“A Tribe Called Quest is being celebrated this week with Bay Area bands, producers and artists celebrating the group’s groundbreaking album Midnight Marauders,” Starita read. “Now, therefore be it, we proclaim Friday, May 17, 2019 is Malik ‘Phife Dawg’ Taylor Day.”
The tribute was a three-day event that took place at San Francisco’s YBCA. The lineup for the event included the Awesöme Orchestra, MJ’s Brass Boppers, Gift of Gab, La Gente, Royal Jelly Jive, Lagos Roots, and others.
Phife spent the last years of his life Oakland, where Deisha was originally from. Phife died at the age of 45 from complications relating to diabetes.
Now, aside from having his own day, the late rapper also has his own street sign at Linden Boulevard at 192nd Street in the St. Albans neighborhood of Queens, New York City. The site is where the music video for Tribe’s “Check The Rhyme” was filmed.
Phife Dawg was a product of Queens, New York who represented for his borough and St. Albans section throughout his 25-plus-year music career. However, the co-founder of A Tribe Called Quest also lived other places during his 45 years of life.
One place Malik Taylor made his home was Oakland, California. That Bay Area city declared May 17 to be Phife Dawg Day entering this weekend. According to HipHopDX‘s Kyle Eustice, who was on hand for a ceremony including musical collaborator/Tribe album producer Starita, Phife’s mother Cheryl Boyce Taylor and the MC/producer’s widow Deisha Head Taylor.
Per the report, The “5-Foot Assassin” made Oakland his home for more than 15 years. During that time, he was often an attendee at Golden State Warriors basketball games. That team is currently competing in the Western Conference Finals.
Reportedly local artists and musicians are honoring Phife this week in tribute. On March 22, 2016, Taylor died from kidney complications after a longtime and publicized diabetes diagnosis.
A posthumous Phife Dawg album is in the works, including a confirmed collaborative song with Redman and fellow Native Tongues alum Busta Rhymes. Late last year, Phife appeared alongside The Black Eyed Peas, Ali Shaheed Muhammad, and De La Soul’s Posdnous on single “ALL AROUND THE WORLD.”
In 2016, the Queens, New York block of Linden Boulevard and 192th Street was re-named Malik “Phife Dawg” Taylor Way.