Oh. My. God.
Legendary record executive L.A. Reid revealed today on the Rap Radar Podcast that a new A Tribe Called Quest album is in the works.
The esteemed hip hop group’s broke up after 1998’s The Love Movement and though they had reunited a few times in recent years, constant bickering between principle performers- Phife Dawg and Q-Tip- made the prospect of another album dim. Then when Phife died at age 45 in March, it seemed impossible that a new Tribe album would ever come to fruition.
Alas, Reid- the CEO of Epic Records- unexpectedly announced today that the album is “coming very soon”.
“You know what I’m excited about, though: A Tribe Called Quest. We have a Tribe Called Quest album coming. I’m really excited about that.”
He said the album was recorded earlier this year before Phife passed, and that all four members- Q-Tip, Phife Dawg, Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Jarobi White- were involved.
If you’re a college kid who likes hip hop but A Tribe Called Quest is before your time, it’s worth your time to check out their catalog. The smooth poetry of Q-Tip was perfectly complemented by the bodacious Phife while rapping over eclectic beats. They’re hands down one of the most influential rap groups of all time, and Low End Theory and Midnight Marauders are both masterpieces.
And as exciting as this news is, let’s hope the new album is on par with their previous work and not just a timely cash-in after the Five Foot Assassin’s death. I want to give A Tribe Called Quest but as Q-Tip famously once elucidated, “Industry rule number 4080, record company people are shady.”