Dave From De La Soul Has Passed Away

The Hip-Hop community is devastated to learn that one of its legends has passed. In a developing story, David Jude Jolicoeur (aka Trugoy The Dove), from De La Soul, passed away at age 54. No exact cause of death has been provided. Peers and collaborators have confirmed the news on social media, as did AllHipHop, who broke the news this afternoon (February 12).

In 2017, Dave revealed a battle with congestive heart failure. The accomplished MC and producer described his diagnosis in a music video for group single, “Royalty Capes.” In the look from and the anonymous Nobody (which had released the year prior), he showed the camera his Life Vest, a machine that he said, “will shock me, and hopefully bring me back from the matrix. I’m ready just to get back to the stage. I miss it. I love traveling; I love being around my guys. And I want that back.” In 2020, the Long Island, New Yorker was reportedly hospitalized for matters related to his heart condition.


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Born David Jude Jolicoeur on September 21, 1968, Dave was both a rapper and a producer for the storied De La trio. The artist of Haitian heritage chose his name, a play on “Yogurt,” spelled backward. Known to many as “Plug Two” by the top of the 1990s, Dave won a Grammy for his work alongside the Gorillaz. Dave is survived by band-mates Posdnuous and Maseo. The group’s producer and early mentor, Prince Paul, recently worked with the group on recordings for upcoming reissues. The catalog includes acclaimed works such as 3 Feet High And Rising, De La Soul Is Dead, Buhloone MindstateStakes Is Highand Art Official Intelligence: Mosaic Thump. In 2016, De La last released the Grammy-nominated and the anonymous Nobody albumfunded through Kickstarter and independently released by the group. While Dave never issued a solo, in 2012, he and Posdnuos partnered for Plug 1 & Plug 2 Present…First Serve at Duck Down.

Dave’s passing comes at a time when De La Soul has been hard at work to make their stories Tommy Boy Records catalog available on digital service providers for the first time ever on March 3. These albums include some replayed material involving Paul, J-Zone, and engineer Scotty Hard to assist in sample clearance issues that plagued the group’s digital offering for decades. In 2021, De La gained ownership of the masters of their first six albums, following Tommy Boy Records’ catalog sale to Reservoir Media. In the late 2010s, Dave was instrumental in calling for the boycott of Tommy Boy after the label and its founder, Tom Silverman, were reportedly negotiating poor terms with De La over streaming royalties. In 2019, the storied imprint planned to release the catalog online. After push-back from the group (who left the label in the early 2000s), those plans halted.

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Last November, De La Soul affiliate Don Newkirk passed away.

Ambrosia For Heads extends condolences to De La Soul, the family of Dave, and his many friends, fans, and supporters.