Irish Grinstead, a member of the ’90s and ’00s R&B girl group 702, died on Saturday, September 17. LeMisha Grinstead, Irish’s sister and fellow member of the group, confirmed the news in a statement on social media. The group was arguably best known for their single “Where My Girls At.” Irish Grinstead was 43.
“It is with great sadness that I have to let you know that my beautiful sister and friend has passed away this evening,” LeMisha Grinstead’s statement reads. “She has had a long battle and she is finally at peace. That girl was as bright as the stars! She was not only beautiful on the outside, but also within. Sharing the stage with her was a joy I will cherish for the rest of my life! We, the family ask for prayers and respect for our privacy as we grieve an outstanding loss to our family.”
Named for their hometown area code for Las Vegas, the group’s debut album No Doubt arrived in 1996. It included the single “Get It Together” and the Missy Elliott-featuring track “Steelo.” Their self-titled follow-up album was released in 1999 and featured “Where My Girls At.” Missy Elliott wrote and co-produced the song, once acknowledging she intended it for TLC. “I wanted it to be a Main chick anthem 4 the side chicks,” she wrote, adding, “it’s still a BOP.”
The group contributed songs to multiple film and TV soundtracks, including Good Burger, Stuart Little, Cousin Skeeter, and the Pootie Tang theme “Pootie Tangin.” Their final album Star came out in 2003 with assistance from the Neptunes, Clipse, and Pharrell. The group disbanded after the album, but periodically reunited. In late 2022, Irish Grinstead took a leave of absence from 702 for undisclosed health reasons.
Read more about “Where My Girls At” in Pitchfork’s “Story of Girl Groups in 45 Songs.”