Phife Dawg’s mother releasing new book ‘Mama Phife Represents’

Phife Dawg's mother releasing new book 'Mama Phife Represents'
(Image source: Haymarket Books)

A Tribe Called Quest’s Phife Dawg died in 2016 after a long fight with diabetes and his mother Cheryl-Boyce-Taylor will release a new book on Jan. 19 sharing insights on their love and relationship. A respected poet and educator in her own right, her latest book Mama Phife Represents tells her journey as a grieving mother dealing with the loss of her son over the past two years.

Mama Phife Represents will retail for $45 for the hardback which will look good on the mantle while the soft cover will sell for $16. It’s also available for pre-order and Amazon describes that the book as “[a] tapestry of narrative poems, dreams, anecdotes, journal entries, and letters as these treasured fragments of their lives show a great love between mother and son, artist and artist, teacher and friend.


Cheryl Boyce-Taylor’s gift includes drawings, emails, hip-hop lyrics, and notes Malik wrote to his parents beginning at age eight. Both elegy and praise song, there is joy and sorrow, healing, and a mother’s triumphant heart that rises and blooms again.”

Q-Tip also hit up Instagram announcing her memoirs last year, posting, “This is Phife’s Mom @cheryl.arrivalpoems latest book. This is her dedication to her son Malik. Please check this out!!”


Phife Dawg's mother releasing new book 'Mama Phife Represents'
(Image source: Instagram – @cheryl.arrivalpoems)

Boyce-Taylor spoke with Okayplayer about her latest work and what made her write the book. “After Malik passed away, I was losing a lot of memory. I couldn’t remember simple things [like] what day it was. I remember [asking] my partner, ‘Was my brother at Malik’s funeral service?'” she explained. “I knew that I was just confused. So more than anything else, I told myself that I had to document this so I could remember it. One of the things that I encountered was the big fear that I would forget about Malik.

“That was one of the emotional upheavals that I was dealing with. I began writing in a journal, and I was also in therapy working very hard to steady myself and get back on my feet. It was a coping skill although I could never forget my child. He was my only child. I had Malik when I was 19, so we kind of grew up together.”

Phife Dawg’s memory will be further cemented this year as well as A Tribe Called Quest’s 1991 classic The Low End Theory will be inducted into The Grammy Hall of Fame.

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