Richard Nichols, the longtime manager and producer of acclaimed hip-hop outfit The Roots, has died following a lengthy battle with leukemia, according to Billboard. He was 56 years old.

The band said in an issued statement:

The Roots Family are devastated to announce the passing of Richard Nichols, the band’s longtime manager, after a long battle with leukemia. Nichols, 55, a Philadelphia native, 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. Nichols is survived by his wife, Mercedes Martinez, his sons Amiri Nichols and Rakim Nichols, his sisters Rochelle Nichols-Solomon, Rebecca Dennis, his brothers Russell Nichols and Reginald Nichols, and the many individuals and artists he mentored in his lifetime.

In addition to serving as the band’s manager, Nichols was credited as producer, executive producer, mixer, and A&R on several Roots albums. He also worked with acts such as Jay Z, Al Green, Common, Jill Scott and Erykah Badu.