Long Beach hip-hop artist shot and killed in weekend dispute

Long Beach hip-hop artist Toko Tasi was shot and killed near West Willow Street and Eucalyptus Avenue on Saturday night, police and fans said.
(L.A. Times Graphics)

A reggae and hip-hop artist who had worked with the bands Sublime and Slightly Stoopid was shot and killed following a dispute in Long Beach late Saturday night, according to police and coroner’s officials.

Tasi Malaki, 45, was fatally shot around 11:40 p.m. Saturday, according to Sarah Ardalani, a spokeswoman for the Los Angeles County Coroner’s office.

Malaki who performed under the stage name “Toko Tasi,” had released two albums and collaborated with several other famed ska, punk and reggae acts, including Sublime and Slightly Stoopid. A post on his official Facebook page said Malaki was “taken away from this Earth by senseless violence,” and promised benefit shows would take place in Long Beach in the near future.


In a news release issued over the weekend, the Long Beach Police Department said a man was shot and killed following a dispute near West Willow Street and Eucalyptus Avenue late Saturday night.

The victim was pronounced dead at the scene. The suspected gunman fled on foot, according to the release. Police did not offer a description of the shooter. It was not clear what led to the dispute.

A memorial post on the Toko Tasi Facebook page described Malaki as a “lover of all things music, who lived life to the fullest.”

He had released two albums since 2007. His debut featured previously unreleased vocals from Bradley Nowell — the singer of famed Long Beach-born ska act Sublime who died in 1996 — on a track called “Love To Share.”

Malaki also had appeared on the song “Shoobie” with San Diego-based Slightly Stoopid in the mid-2000s. His most recent album, “Rise Ta Shine,” was released in 2017.