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The Roots founding member Malik B. has sadly passed away, aged 47

Hip hop artist Malik Abdul Basit, a.k.a. Malik B., has sadly passed away at age 47.

The Roots made the announcement via Twitter yesterday, accompanied by a tribute to the Philadelphian rapper.

Photo: T. Eric Monroe/@tdoteric

Tributes are flooding in from fans, colleagues, and the music world following the passing of Malik B. The artist was most well known for his founding role in The Roots.

We regretfully inform you of the passing of our beloved brother and long time Roots member Malik Abdul Basit,” the group’s announcement read. “May he be remembered for his devotion to Islam and innovation as one of the most gifted MCs of all time. We ask that you please respect his family in our time of mourning.” The cause of Basit’s death has yet to be released.

Founding The Roots along with Tariq ‘Black Thought’ Trotter and Ahmir ‘Questlove’ Thompson, Basit would go on to appear on the group’s first four albums throughout the ’90s. The artist then went on to release one solo album and an EP before returning to the hip-hop group for their 2006 album Game Theory. Tariq ‘Black Thought’ Trotter posted a tribute in rhyme to his late partner on Instagram:

We made a name and carved a lane together where there was none,” Trotter’s tribute read. “We resurrected a city from the ashes, put it on our backs and called it Illadelph. In friendly competition with you from day one, I always felt as if I possessed only a mere fraction of your true gift and potential. “

My beloved brother M-illitant. I can only hope to have made you as proud as you made me. The world lost a real one. May Allah pardon you, forgive your sins and grant you the highest level of paradise.”

Read the full post below:

 

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We made a name and carved a lane together where there was none. We ressurected a city from the ashes, put it on our backs and called it Illadelph. In friendly competition with you from day one, I always felt as if I possessed only a mere fraction of your true gift and potential. Your steel sharpened my steel as I watched you create cadences from the ether and set them free into the universe to become poetic law, making the English language your bitch. I always wanted to change you, to somehow sophisticate your outlook and make you see that there were far more options than the streets, only to realize that you and the streets were one… and there was no way to separate a man from his true self. My beloved brother M-illitant. I can only hope to have made you as proud as you made me. The world just lost a real one. May Allah pardon you, forgive your sins and grant you the highest level of paradise. #MalikB #TheLegendaryRootsCrew

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