Richard Nichols, 55, longtime manager of the Roots, died Thursday, July 17, in Philadelphia of leukemia, the band announced.
Mr. Nichols, a native of Philadelphia, "managed the band from its inception in 1992, and was instrumental in every aspect of The Roots' creative, cultural, and professional life over the past two decades," the band said in a statement.
He had been hospitalized for several months and was taken off life support Wednesday night and died Thursday afternoon, according to the Roots-affiliated website Okayplayer.com and Billboard magazine.
"Heavy time for me right now," band drummer Questlove wrote on Instagram.
Billboard magazine said that Mr. Nichols steered the Roots "on an unlikely trajectory from Philly street buskers to heavy-touring hip-hop favorites, to the house band for America's premiere late night show," The Tonight Show Starring Jimmy Fallon.