On March 22nd the world of music lost PHIFE DAWG, and I don't know about you but it felt like loosing a treasured friend from back in the day. One with whom I shared too many head boppin' moments with. As a tribute to the man, the group; ICON MANN men actor/poet OMARI HARDWICK , star of the hit show POWER, and James Lopez, Head of Motion Picture for Will Packer Productions pay their respects in verse and audible. Much respect to Artist Demont Pinder for the original portrait. There will never be another. R.I.P Phife.  

PHIFE DAWG a/ka/ The 5 Footer.  


(November 20,1970 - March 22,2016) 


OMARI HARDWICK, star of the hit show POWER (Starz network) pays tribute with a poem. 

Maybe cuz I read it somewhere that mine would be a verse forever embedded in the air.... 

Maybe floating like a blimp, a bird or better yet I bet it...a word, Check the RHIME like a pimp getting paid on credit...absurd 

And any talk of a creature doing what I did for the other teachers..... all should dead it. I'm the principal still alive. Yep, my heart will always be indebted. The mic of Jackson 5. And you tell em short to tall I said it.... 

The 5 footer but it was God who let it..... I thank Him.  

For, I left the game so sweet, it must be why he made me diabetic. But, Dear God...the game done changed from the way I left it! Forgive them Lord.... for they simply knew not....how much I fed it.  

A raw food for thought even for those afraid of the meat all the rest bought. Each I AM bic pen tamed her, each 80 proof beat at the Midnight of Marauder, each broken dance in the middle of every broken street.... I dashed the salt for the taste of the asphalt.  

From shell toes to cleats...the cholesterol for the best of y’all. And now I give thanks. Thanks to the ink, thanks for the sheets.  

Oh My God I got to Kick it on an Award Tour with Bonita Applebum rap(ped) around my thumb until we found a way back to El Segundo before the fat lady's gun go....boom! Gone too soon. But, Electric Relaxing like i'm back in Mama's womb.  

Dear Dilla, make me a pallet to lay.... right next to Aaliyah & Hathaway's room.  

Tell "Omari Peekaso" as far as I know I was born the day before his daughter's date & that the long of my short or the early of the world's late... is I say goodbye the day before his Brave son's. I was made the 1.  

Like Ali to the glove. I gave the fun & the love.  

Like Kweli to the most deaf & numb. & Thank God I got to see a Black President run....just gave me more stories to get done.  

For Deisha & Jess's sake. I will meet you both at Heaven's gate with a big ass plate of quiche, cheese grits, a smile even bigger than Shanice & a box full of hits!  

"You on point, Phife?! Until the end of time, Tip" So...Oh My God, I 'Give Thanks' for AAALLL of it!



JAMES LOPEZ pays tribute.

"Asking me to choose my favorite among A Tribe Called Quest's six albums is like asking me to choose which of my children I love more.  No group in the history of rap have released two classic albums back to back like Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders."

  • People's Instinctive Travels and the Paths of Rhythm
  • The Low End Theory
  • Midnight Marauders
  • Intermission and The Ummah
  • Beats, Rhymes and Life
  • The Love Movement and split

How did  A Tribe Called Quest  influence you?  

They were the soundtrack to my college years.  I wanted to be a Native Tongue member as everyone could tell by the way I dressed.  The baggy Girbaud jeans, the button down print shirts over a white t-shirt with my African medallion were part of my uniform.  – James Lopez

 What do they represent to you?  

They represented the Afrocentric branch of the hip-hop family tree, which was where I fit in the most.  

 What was their contribution to Culture?  

Their influence runs deep.  They are the forefathers of The Roots, Kanye West, KMD, Common, Talib Kweli, Mos Def, Diggable Planets, Little Brother, The Pharcyde, Freestyle Fellowship, The Nonce, Slum Village and many more.  Their beats, truthful lyrics, social consciousness moved the "ball down the field" in the world of Hip Hop.

 What is your favorite Tribe song?  

The Scenario remix. 

From 1985 to 1998 years A Tribe Called Quest blessed us with six albums, which rocked you and why?  

You are asking me to choose which of my children I love more.  No group in the history of rap have released two classic albums back to back like Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders. 

 Your favorite 8 bars?  

"It has somethin' to do with lovin and it ain't nothin' nice..."