Dave Jolicoeur, better known to hip-hop fans as De La Soul‘s Trugoy the Dove, passed away at the age of 54 earlier this month. He was part of the groundbreaking hip-hop trio who put the Native Tongues squad on the map with their 1989 release 3 Feet High and Rising.
Now his bandmates Kevin “Posdnuos” Mercer and Vincent “Maseo” Mason, are paying homage to their fallen bandmate on social media.
“You were the heart of our group,” Posdnuos wrote. “You brought so much creativity, energy, and passion to our music, and your influence will be felt for years to come. 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.”
He added, “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…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.”
Maseo also posted, saying that he and Posdnuos would ensure the group’s legacy was maintained and providing some insight into their relationship.
“I want to truly thank you for having the birds eye view of our collective vision to be a group. Before Trugoy The Dove, I met J.D. Dove aside being called Dave in 1985,” he said. “I remember your mom calling you Dove, so you’ve always had wings, so go on and fly into the light, Merce and I will make sure your legacy is well preserved. ‘We Are De La Soul’ for life and after life, but obviously, it will never be the same.”
Maseo also shared that he and Jolicouer had found peace in their relationship as “brothers” and that the trio had already shared with each other what they wanted done in case any of them were to pass away.
“On one end I’m happy you no longer have to suffer the pain of your condition but on the other hand I’m extremely upset at the fact that you’re not here to celebrate and enjoy what we worked and fought so hard to achieve…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.”
Though no details were shared about Jolicoeur’s cause of death, he acknowledged that he was diagnosed with congestive heart failure in 2016’s “Royalty Capes” and was wearing a device that would shock his heart back into rhythm if need be.
No funeral arrangements have yet been announced. Jolicoeur’s passing is particularly painful as the group struggled for years to clear samples to allow their work to be played on streaming sites. Just recently, the group was able to resolve those issues and was expected to release its catalog online in March.
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