After Phife Dawg’s untimely passing last month, the Five Foot Assassin is still making an impact on hip-hop. A new track called “Nutshell” has been released online, from the late rapper’s Give Thanks; an album that Phife Dawg was working on before he passed on March 22 from diabetes complications.
The song features several rhymers including Dawg’s A Tribe Called Quest bandmates Q-Tip, Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Jarobi; who speak on who Phife Dawg was “in a nutshell.” Other legendary artists such as Rakim, Redman and Posdnuos also share their thoughts on the late rhymer.
Afterwards, Phife Dawg heads into a slew of alliterating rhymes; affirming why, for so many hip-hop fans, his departure leaves an empty spot in hip-hop. But the song is especially significant, as the production comes from the renowned J. Dilla, who passed away from kidney failure in 2006.
“Invulnerable, inviting, invincible / Inventive one, which leaves most in-viable / Get involved, invest in these youths kid / Invigorate, induce that old realness / Insecure, nah, more like inhumane, it’s not a game / Shut your mouth, use your inner voice, stay in your lane / Inaugurate those with incentive to innovate / Insistent that those who inspire we will initiate,” rhymes Phife Dawg on the track.
“Nutshell” premiered at Harlem’s Apollo Theater at the “Celebration of Phife” memorial where Kanye West, Andre 3000, Lauryn Hill, Queen Latifah, LA Reid, Dave Chappelle, KRS One, LL Cool J, Chuck D and more gathered to celebrate the late rapper.
Fans who buy the song from iTunes will also be donating to a good cause; half of the proceeds from the sale of “Nutshell” will be donated to the American Diabetes Association and the National Kidney Foundation. Watch the video above and get the song here.