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Today is a rough day in hip-hop. Fans of all ages, from old to new school, are mourning the loss of Phife Dawg.

The legendary 5 Foot Assassin from A Tribe Called Quest died last night at the age of 45. Tribe has not released an official statement yet, but legends such as DJ Scratch and Punchline of Punch & Words confirmed the news. No cause of death has been stated, though Phife was diagnosed with diabetes back in the ’90s.

To remember the legendary Tribesman, we have put together a list of rare performances from the group. Our thoughts are with Q-Tip, Ali Shaheed Muhammad, Jarobi, and friends and family:

“Can I Kick It?” – Showtime At The Apollo

The Tribe went uptown and appeared on the Apollo TV show from the ’90s. One album in and the audience at the theater was loving them.

“Check The Rhyme” – In Living Color

Tribe came to the classic comedy show that was home to the Wayans family. Peep a young Jennifer Lopez, back when she was one of the Fly Girls, introducing the legendary group.

Interview & Freestyle – Arsenio Hall

In this clip, the group sits with Arsenio and talks about making “Award Tour.” Then Phife spits a freestyle as Tip provides a beat box for him. Check how Ali and Tip are excited about an 18-year-old singer who plays multiple instruments: D’Angelo.

“Rumble In The Jungle” – Late Night with David Letterman

This is a gem. Tribe performed this rare song from the Rumble In The Jungle soundtrack with the Fugees, John Forte, and Busta Rhymes. Need we say more?

Freestyle – Rap City

Tip and Phife dropped a quick freestyle during an appearance on the BET show. This was when Joe Clair was hosting.

BONUS: Sprite Commercial

Back in the day, nearly every rapper appeared in a Sprite commercial. Tribe was no exception.


#RIPPhifeDawg: 5 Rare A Tribe Called Quest Performances  was originally published on