Named after the Detroit record producer and rapper known for his work with his group Slum Village and well, basically anyone else who was around in the 1990s hip hop circle. James Dewitt Yancey worked with everyone. Common, A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, Janet Jackson, The Roots. This week has been my Dilla week, digging up a few of my favourite tracks from him. But, like the geek I am, I also dug up the samples where the beats originated from. Here is my week in beats…
Swahililand – Ahmad Jamal
The sample appears on De La Soul classic, “Stakes is High” at the very beginning of the track and throughout. The Dilla/De La relationship was a tight one, with Dilla also worked on other De La Soul tracks including “Verbal Clap”.
Sugar Me/Standing on the Road – Klaus Wunderlich
Guru, known as one part of Gang Starr, did a series of hip hop and jazz recordings called Jazzmatazz. Dilla produced this one track that featured Bilal called, Certified. I’m sure Guru and Dilla are still making beats in the studio in the sky.
Take Me – Fabulous Souls
If you don’t know the Fabulous Souls, get digging. Good for some funky get down sessions in front of the mirror. This one was on extra loud this week. Hear those drums? The sample was used on Erykah Badu’s Love.
Let the Dollars Circulate – Billy Paul
My friend Phill told me about a British electronic band named Spacek or Spacek Sound System. They – Steve, Ed and Morgan Spacek, worked a lot with J Dilla. Dilla’s remix of “Eve” is one of my top five Dilla joints, ever. But this week, I was listening to Dilla’s work on Spacek’s track, “Dollar” which features this sample from “Me and Mrs Jones” singer, Billy Paul.