Both surviving members of alternative hip-hop pioneers De La Soul have now broken their social media silence following the death of band member Trugoy the Dove. Trugoy, whose real name was David Jude Jolicoeur, passed away aged 54 on February 12th, 2023.
Longtime member Kelvin Mercer, known by fans as Posdnuos, wrote on Instagram: “You were the heart of our group. You brought so much creativity, energy, and passion to our music, and your influence will be felt for years to come.”
He continued: “Your passing is a great loss not only to us, but also to the entire hip-hop community. You were a true artist who used music to inspire and uplift others, and you will be deeply missed by all who knew you.”
Pos concluded: “We would like to say thank you Dave for being a big brother. Thank you for being a friend. Thank you for the wise words placed in your verses. Thank you for the music you produced that is loved by so many. Thank you for never wanting to compromise the quality of our brand. Thank you for helping us become a group that will remain etched in the timeline of hip hop culture as well as the fabric of music and for now on when we perform ‘Ring Ring Ring Ha Ha Hey’ we will say ‘2-2-2-2-222 we got an angel in heaven who can talk to you'”.
As for Maseo, his tribute shared a photo of De La Soul signing their first record deal with Tommy Boy Records in the late 1980s. The caption below the photo reads: “DAMMIT DAVE! to be writing about you in past tense is CRAZY, but at least I got to tell you a lot of this and more except for the part about being named Dove. Let me just end off by saying I am very content and more than reassured about our relationship as brothers because we discussed it thoroughly and solidified what is necessary just in case something happened to any of us, but who would’ve thought so soon when there was so much to live for. MY SOUL IS HURTING REALLY BAD, but I want to thank my brother @Plugwondelasoul for digging me out of my hole alongside my wife and children. To all the De La Fans, our peers, constituents and family, thank you for all of your support through this troubling time.”
In the comments section, DJ Premier wrote “SUPER CLASSIC HISTORY”, while A-Trak responded with “Wowww”. Genre-defining rappers Busta Rhymes and Diamond D also offered their condolences.