Trugoy The Dove Dead at 54
Trugoy The Dove, of the legendary Hip-Hop trio De La Soul, has transitioned. While news of his congenital heart failure was made public in 2016, his official cause of death has not been released.
In De La Soul’s 208 “Royalty Capes” video, Trugoy spoke openly about his health condition and how it prevented him from performing. De La Soul was part of the Grammys’ Hip-Hop tribute performance last week, but Trugoy didn’t join his bandmates on the stage.
Trugoy, born David Jude Jolicoeur, and high school friends Posdnuos (Kelvin Mercer) and Maseo (Vincent Mason), formed De La Soul in the mid ’80s. The group released their groundbraking debut “3 Feet High and Rising” in 1988.
In the early ’90s, De La Soul teamed up with A Tribe Called Quest, Jungle Brothers, Queen Latifah and Black Sheep to form the Native Tongues. They delivered conscious, Afrocentric lyrics over sampled beats, which brought balance to the proliferating gangsta rap of that era.
“I think the element of that time of what was taking place in music, hip-hop, and our culture, I think it welcomed that and opened up minds and spirits to see and try new different things,” Jolicoeur told Billboard last month.
The trio came together while in high school, in the Long Island town of Amityville. They all rapped in different groups, but would come together to record a demo called “Plug Tunin,” which Mase played for his neighbor, Prince Paul of Stetsasonic. Paul, played the track for rap figures of the New York music industry, which led to their signing with Tommy Boy Records in 1989.
The most recent album that Jolicoeur and De La Soul released was “And the Anonymous Nobody…” in 2016.
In August of 2021, De La Soul announced that they gained ownership to the rights of their music after a long battle with Tommy Boy Records. Reservoir Media acquired their catalog in 2021, paving the way for the group to stream their music on popular streaming sites. The group’s first six albums will be available to stream in March 2023, according to Billboard. To be re-released is 3 Feet High and Rising, De La Soul Is Dead, Buhloone Mindstate, Stakes Is High, Art Official Intelligence: Mosaic Thump, and AOI: Bionix.
De La Soul was scheduled to perform three shows in the United Kingdom beginning on April 8, 2023.
Said singer Pharell Williams in a Twitter tribute: “Trugoy Dave from De La Soul has gone up to be with the day of the stars with the Master.”
Rapper and producer Erick Sermon honored Jolicoeur on Instagram: “This one hurts. From Long Island from one of the best rap groups in Hiphop # Delasoul #plug2 Dave has passed away you will be missed… RIP.”
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