Timothy J Parker, AKA Present of Gab, one half of the American rap duo Blackalicious and recognized for his acrobatic move and dexterous wordplay, has died on the age of fifty.
Parker, maybe greatest recognized for his uninterrupted rap efficiency on Blackalicious’s Alphabet Aerobics, “peacefully departed this earth to be with our ancestors” on 18 June, the Bay Space hip-hop collective Quannum Initiatives introduced on Friday.
A consultant for Blackalicious advised Rolling Stone that Parker had died of pure causes. The rapper had endured quite a few well being issues through the years, present process dialysis till a kidney transplant in January 2020.
“Our brother was an MC’s MC who devoted his life to his craft. One of many biggest to ever do it,” Parker’s longtime pal and Blackalicious bandmate Xavier “Chief Xcel” Mosley stated in an announcement. “He’s essentially the most prolific particular person I’ve ever recognized.”
Mosley met Parker in highschool in Sacramento, California, the place Parker was born on 7 October 1971. The 2 fashioned Blackalicious whereas Mosley attended the close by College of California Davis, the place they joined forces with their fellow Davis-area artists DJ Shadow and Lyrics Born.
The duo launched a number of EPs within the 90s earlier than their acclaimed first studio album, Nia, in 1999. Present of Gab’s acrobatic artistry was most famously on show in Alphabet Aerobics, from 1999’s A2G EP, through which the primary letter of every verse begins with a sequential model of the alphabet.
Blackalicious launched three extra albums – Blazing Arrow (2002), The Craft (2005), and Imani Vol 1 (2015) – and toured as lately as pre-pandemic 2020. Parker additionally launched a number of solo initiatives, together with The Subsequent Logical Development (2012) and LPs with Quannum MCs and the Mighty Underdogs, one other Bay Space collective.
Based on Rolling Stone, on the time of his loss of life, Parker held over 100 unreleased tracks for future Blackalicious releases.
In an announcement posted to Twitter, DJ Shadow remembered the primary time he heard Parker rap at an impromptu MC session: “His voice was excellent, his wordplay endlessly creative,” he wrote, recalling being dumbfounded that the five-minute efficiency was fully freestyle, off the highest of Parker’s head. “In an business with so many frauds and followers, Tim Parker was extra than simply authentic; he was distinctive,” he wrote. “And he was, fairly merely, essentially the most preternaturally gifted MC I’ve ever labored with.”
“He was all about pushing the boundaries of his artwork kind in essentially the most genuine method doable,” Mosley stated in his assertion. “He actually believed within the therapeutic energy of music. He seen himself as a vessel utilized by a better energy whose function was to offer constructive contributions to humanity by Rhyme.”