This tribute was posted to the Roots’ social media pages:
“It is with the heaviest of hearts that we say goodbye to our brother Leonard Nelson Hubbard. May your transition bring peace to your family to your friends to your fans and all of those who loved you. Rest in Melody Hub.”
Hub had been battling multiple myeloma– a type of blood cancer — since 2007. He did his last show with band in August 2007.
In the intervening years, he had undergone multiple rounds of chemotherapy, according to his wife Stephanie. She told Philadelphia’s 6ABC that the musician had been feeling energetic of late, but last night his condition deteriorated rapidly.
“I was called to the hospital,” she told 6ABC. “They told me what had happened. That he had passed. I went to the hospital and was able to sit with him.”
She continued, “It happened quickly. He didn’t suffer a lot.”
Hub joined Ahmir “Questlove” Thompson, Tariq “Black Thought” Trotter and Malik B. to form The Roots in the early ’90s. The group released its first album, Organix, in 1993. The group’s breakthrough disc, Things Fall Apart, was released in 1999. It was certified platinum and the track “You Got Me” won the Grammy for Best Rap Performance By a Duo or Group that year.
Hub stayed with the band through five subsequent albums including lladelph Halflife, Things Fall Apart, Phrenology, The Tipping Point and Game Theory. He had already left the band when they became the official house band on Late Night with Jimmy Fallon in 2009.
In 2007, Hub was diagnosed with a multiple myeloma, a blood cancer. He managed to still produce music and collaborate with artists like Jill Scott, while battling cancer for more than a decade. Full story on @6abc https://t.co/AoWCAOPzhA https://t.co/uwPjOx1nmx pic.twitter.com/GtwHUVKf8o
— Christie Ileto (@Christie_Ileto) December 17, 2021
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