De La Soul founding member David Jolicoeur dies, aged 54

Turgoy tne Dove of De La Soul
(Image credit: Jim Dyson/Getty)

De La Soul founding member David Jolicoeur has died, aged 54. The rapper, who performed under the stage name Trugoy the Dove, was a co-founder of the legendary hip-hop trio alongside Maseo (Vincent Lamont Mason Jr) and Posdnuos (Kelvin Mercer). No cause of death has been announced but in recent years Jolicoeur had revealed a diagnosis of congestive heart failure.

David Jude Jolicoeur was born in 1968, and formed De La Soul in 1988 alongside school friends Posdnuous and Maseo, The group revolutionised hip-hop with seminal debut album 3 Feet High And Rising, a masterpiece that went against the aggressive gangsta rap zeitgeist, and introduced listeners to their concept of the D.A.I.S.Y. Age, (da inner sound, y'all), though the band subsequently railed against the resulting hippy tag.

That debut, which included hits The Magic Number and Me, Myself and I, remained the band's most successful record, going on to sell over 1 million copies in the US alone.

3 Feet... and five more De La Soul albums are due to appear on streaming services for the first time next month, after years of delays almost certainly due to clearance issues with samples used in the band's signature magpie sound, an intricate web of jazz and funk samples.

Legendary producer Prince Paul, an early De La Soul champion who produced the band's first three albums, had recently been back in the studio with the trio and  was amongst the hip-hop luminaries paying tribute, writing, “You have no idea how much pain in this last year. A blessing we got a chance to unite again … De La Soul forever.”

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Will Groves

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