David Jolicoeur a.k.a. Trugoy, one third of influential New York rap group De La Soul, has passed away at the age of 54.
The news was first reported by AllHipHop and The Grio. A representative for De La Soul confirmed Trugoy’s passing to Complex. A cause of death has not been revealed. A statement from the group is forthcoming.
The hip-hop community reacted with great sadness.
DJ Prince Paul, who collaborated with De La Soul on three albums, shared some words on Trugoy’s death.
For the past several years, De La Soul has been in the news surrounding the ownership of their masters. In 2021, Reservoir acquired the famed hip-hop and electronic music label Tommy Boy for around $100 million. The deal compromises more than 6,000 masters, including recordings from Coolio, Queen Latifah, Naughty By Nature, House of Pain, and De La Soul.
The deal allowed for the trio to make the announcement in 2023 that their first six albums—including the groundbreaking 3 Feet High and Rising—are finally coming to streaming services. The group began to rollout singles “The Magic Number” and “Eye Know” in anticipation of their full catalog being released on March 3, 2023.
At this year’s Grammy Awards, Posdnuos performed “Buddy” as part of the 15-minute medley spanning decades to celebrate hip-hop turning 50 in August.
Trugoy, known by many as Plug 2, was very open about his health problems and detailed his fight with congestive heart failure. “I’m ready to just get back to the stage,” he said in the opening video for “Royalty Capes.” “I love traveling. I love being around my guys and I want that back.”