Malik B. On the Left: Image Courtesy

Malik B. Of The Legendary Hip Hop Group The Roots Dies Aged 47

The death of the original founding member of the legendary rap group the Roots was confirmed by his cousin Don Champion on Twitter. “May he be remembered for his devotion to Islam and innovation as one of the most gifted MCs of all time.” the Roots spoke of the late MC Malik Abdul Basit in a statement announcing his death.

Malik B., who hailed from Philadelphia, USA and was part of the Roots since 1987 has been described as one of the best MCs to have ever touched the mic and whose gift helped cement the name of the iconic group in the hearts of many Hip Hop and Music lovers, together with Questlove and Black Thought, they created four classic albums Organix in 1993, then Do Yoiu Want More?!!??! released sometime in ’95, Illadelph Halflife which came out in 1996 and Things Fall Apart released in ’99. The rapper later left the group while they were working on Phrenology released in 2002.

“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.” His fellow Roots rapper, Black Thought spoke of Malik B. in part in an Instagram post

The rapper however, appeared as a guest in subsequent Roots albums Rising Down and Game Theory, the reasons for him leaving the group are not clear, but Black Though did allude to his departure from the group on ‘Water’ a song from the Prenology album. Mali B. whose solo album Street Assault was released in 2005 had his most recent full-record, a collaborative project with producer Mr. Green titled Unpredictable, released in 2015.

More artist and fans continue to pay tribute to the rapper on various social media platforms.


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