Greg Tate dead: Groundbreaking music critic and Black Rock Coalition co-founder dies at 64

Music journalist Greg Tate, who co-founded the Black Rock Coalition, has died at the age of 64, a representative has confirmed

Music critic and Black Rock Coalition co-founder Greg Tate dies at 64
Music critic and Black Rock Coalition co-founder Greg Tate dies at 64

Groundbreaking music journalist Greg Tate has died.

The critic and author, who co-founded the Black Rock Coalition, was 64.

The sad news was confirmed by one of his publishers at Duke University Press.

A cause of death is not yet known.

Greg was best known as a hip-hop writer, but also touched on aspects of African-American culture in his work.

As well as writing about music, Greg was also a musician and a founding member of the Black Rock Coalition and the leader of ensemble Burnt Sugar.

The Black Rock Coalition is a New York-based artists’ collective and nonprofit organisation dedicated to promoting the creative freedom and works of black musicians.

Jesse James Miller, Greg Tate, and Scott Saul speak onstage at “I Am Richard Pryor” Premiere during the 2019 SXSW Conference and Festivals


Getty Images for SXSW)

Greg was born and raised in Dayton, Ohi, before moving to Washington DC with his family when he was 13.

He found a love for music and taught himself how to play the guitar.

He later went to Howard University, where he studied journalism and film, and soon became a renowned music writer.

After moving to New York, he landed a job at the Village Voice in 1987 and became one of the publication’s most recognised writers.

He’s been referred to as “one of the godfathers of hip-hop journalism”.

His work has featured in The New York Times, The Washington Post, Essence, VIBE, and Rolling Stone.

Greg was much respected in his industry


Getty Images)

Tributes began pouring in following the sad news of his death.

One fan posted: “One of the first things I did when I set out to write professionally was read everything I could by Greg Tate. He is the blueprint – the kind of writer, thinker, observer we all hope to be. Rest up and well done to one of the greatest.”

Another penned: “Papa Greg Tate has joined the ancestors. The Godfather of hip-hop criticism. An expansive, gentle soul. His only violence was intellectual. (& it was beautiful & most of them folks deserved it!) He taught me/all of us so many things about so many things. Thank you, Greg..”

While writer Hanif Abdurraqib shared: “no language for how thankful I am to have lived in a time where I could learn from Greg Tate. Absolutely devastated by this loss.”

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