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Q-Tip Announces Final Tribe Called Quest Album With Touching Letter, Phife Tribute

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Jarobi White, Q-Tip, Phife Dawg and Ali Shaheed Muhammad of A Tribe Called Quest perform as Samsung Galaxy Sound Stage presents A Tribe Called Quest and Prince at SXSW on March 16, 2013 in Austin, Texas.

They can kick it again! Q-Tip took to Instagram on Friday, October 28, to announce that A Tribe Called Quest is releasing a “final” album 18 years after they released their 1998 LP, The Love Movement.

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The rapper, 46, shared a series of handwritten notes to explain why the hip-hop group — made up of Q-Tip, Al Shaheed Muhammad, Jarobi White (until 1991) and the late Phife Dawg — decided to jump back in the studio.

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“To all the good people worldwide! We hope this letter finds you and yours safe and without a scratch! Last year this time myself, Jarobi, Ali and Phife had the extreme pleasure of performing on the Tonight Show. It was our first TV performance in 18 years,” the rapper wrote. “The energy for us that night was one that we hadn’t experienced on stage together in some time!”

Q-Tip went on to explain that ATCQ’s Tonight Show performance happened to fall on the same night as last year’s terror attack in Paris. He also acknowledged Phife’s death. The rapper passed away at age 45 on March 22, 2016, after a long battle with diabetes.

Q-Tip, Ali Shaheed Muhammad and Phife Dawg (from left) of the hip-hop group A Tribe Called Quest pose for a portrait session in July 1991 in New York.

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“As we left 30 Rock I felt the need, we all did, to get back to the studio and start that cookup!! So we got to it!!” Q-Tip continued. “It was coming together nicely and as you may Know we lost our brother. May God rest his soul on March 22. But he left us with the blueprint of what we had to do.”

In Phife’s absence, the “Can I Kick It?” performers recruited rappers Busta Rhymes and Consequence — both have been featured on A Tribe Called Quest tracks before — for their upcoming, as-yet-untitled album.

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“So we collected ourselves and along tribesmen, Busta and Cons … we completed what will be, obviously the final A Tribe Called Quest album!” he enthused. “No this isn’t filled with old Phife bars … This is that pure, unstopped on pure!!”

He concluded: “And on November 11, 2016, we will complete our paths of rhythm … Join us! Peace!! Q-Tip.”

Tell Us: Are you excited for A Tribe Called Quest’s final album?