I’m a nocturnal guy and the other day, I was up and working on a blog post when I a tweet that read “RIP Phife Dawg” came across my Twitter timeline and the first thing I did was start searching through as many sources as possible to confirm if the news was true or not — and as an increasing number of sources began to confirm the news, I became increasingly crestfallen. As a child and as a teenager, A Tribe Called Quest was a major part of my life. I can still remember the first time I heard “I Left My Wallet in El Segundo” and at the time I recognized that those guys were different than anything I had ever heard before — and I wanted to hear much more. “Bonita Applebum” came around just as I started to increasingly think about love and dating; in fact, that song was the sort of song that made you nervously walk over to that person you liked and ask to slow dance with you. And if that person said “yes,” it was both the most awkward and most wonderful thing that could possibly happen to you. At one point I could recite the lyrics to “Scenario,” “Scenario Remix,” and “Check the Rhime” by memory, thanks to the countless mixtapes I made while listening to Kool DJ Red Alert‘s and Kid Capri‘s radio shows every week.
So naturally, like a lot of Tribe fans I’m heartbroken and shocked. I turn 37 next Monday and to hear of someone 8 years older than me dying is something that has had me very fucked up of late. We have to hold on to every moment as close as possible, right? With that in mind, check out the JOVM tribute to A Tribe Called Quest and to Phife Dawg featuring some of my favorite Tribe songs.