Underground rap legend MF DOOM died in October, his wife has revealed - just two weeks after he released a new song without any hint of his death.
"The greatest husband, father, teacher, student, business partner, lover and friend I could ever ask for," Jasmine Dumile wrote on the Madvillainy rapper's social media pages on Friday morning (NZ time).
MF DOOM, real name Daniel Dumile, was known for his collaborations with producers Danger Mouse and Madlib, and Wu-Tang rapper Ghostface Killah. The 49-year-old famously usually only appeared in public wearing masks inspired by Marvel comic book supervillain Doctor Doom.
"Thank you for all the things you have shown, taught and given to me, our children and our family," Jasmine wrote.
"Thank you for teaching me how to forgive beings and give another chance, not to be so quick to judge and write off. Thank you for showing how not to be afraid to love and be the best person I could ever be. My world will never be the same without you. Words will never express what you and Malachi mean to me, I love both and adore you always. May THE ALL continue to bless you, our family and the planet."
She said he "transitioned" on October 31. Dumile's label Rhymesayers later confirmed the tragic news.
Dumile was born in London and grew up in New York, and began his rap career in the late 1980s alongside his brother in the group KMD. After his brother was killed in a car accident, he adopted the MF DOOM persona.
"I wanted to get onstage and orate, without people thinking about the normal things people think about. Like girls being like, 'Oh, he's sexy,' or 'I don't want him, he's ugly,' and then other dudes sizing you up," he told the New Yorker in 2009, about why he started wearing a mask.
"A visual always brings a first impression. But if there's going to be a first impression I might as well use it to control the story. So why not do something like throw a mask on?"
In 2004 he collaborated with producer Madlib on what would be his most popular album, Madvillainy, which has been named amongst the greatest albums ever made by Rolling Stone and NME magazines.
He followed that up in 2005 with The Mouse and the Mask, a collaboration with Danger Mouse, one of the most in-demand producers of the era. His final solo album, Born Like This, came in 2009.
His last single 'The Chocolate Conquistadors', a collaboration with BADBADNOTGOOD for game Grand Theft Auto Online, came out just two weeks ago, without any hint he had passed away.
His cause of death wasn't revealed.