D3: Dilla Dependence Day

J Dilla Forever
Click image to enlarge image.

Now it is time to tell my Dilla story in memory of him on February 10th. I discovered Jay Dee aka J Dilla as some others might have walking into Fat Beats in the late ’90s and hearing:
“Hey, hey, hey, h-hey, hey
What you say, get this money
If they say what you gon do today, just say
Hey I wanna get paid
Pay day, pay day, pay day”.
With this hypnotic hook and a beat that caughted your soul it was apparent I was hearing something new. So I asked the DJ/Store clerk who it was and he said that’s Slum Village. I nodded my head and headed over to the vinyl to find this Slum Village musical master piece. I found a 12″ vinyl named, “Slum Village – Get Dis Money (off of the Office Space soundtrack)” and wonder if this is the right one and take it to the counter. With a quick glance at the turntables I see I selected the right one. With the record in hand I take it home and play out the vinyl until I know every intricate loop.

So my mouth was now watering for a Slum Village full LP. In the summer of 2000 my prayer was answer with Fantastic Vol. 2 on GoodVibe Recordings. With people from Q-Tip to D’Angelo to the Roots saying they were the ones to watch I knew I was making a great purchase. I never knew I how much I would I would love this album. J-88 was “The Best Kept Secret” because I did even realize it was Slum Village until a couple of listens. With the next album not featuring Dilla I skipped it anticipating Dilla’s new solo career. It came from the most infectious song called, “B.B.E. (Big Booty Express)” off the album: “Welcome To Detroit”.

I thought to myself what could Dilla do now to continue his excellency? Well he would team up with one of my favorites emcee/producers Madlib to create one of the brilliant collaborations in the history with Jaylib – “Champion Sound”. It truly was a champion sound that every fan of either one could cross reference to find the perfect album. Three years later and now signed to Stones Throw, J Dilla would deliver his most illustrious musical adventure with an instrumental album simply called “Donuts“. Released on his birthday it would solidify his production values but it would be short lived with his death three days later. J Dilla will be called ahead of his time, one of the best on the boards but I will always remember his infectious beat that caught my ear on the summer day from a turntable and speakers.

For other Dilla inspired stories click here.

Happy Dilla Year

Happy New Year! 2007 was a great year for Ecliptic Sight and 2008 looks like it will be ramping up to be another good one. Why is the post titled: “Happy Dilla Year”? Well 2007 was the year of J Dilla aka Jay Dee aka James Yancey (R.I.P.) and will continue to be his century if the collaborations, mixtapes and CDs keep popping up. Here’s the run down in case you missed it:

J Dilla – Ruff Draft (2007)
Turn it up and get Wild!

Dilla Month (2007)

February “Dilla Month” and Ruff Draft Parties in March. Thanks to Jati, Nicole, Joe, and Rhettmatic for photos.

The Roots – Please Don’t Go co-produced by J Dilla (single) (2007)
Via the Okayplayer.com Boards

DJ Soul & Okayplayer present “Assorted Donuts” (A Tribute To J Dilla) (tracked verison) (2007)

1. Intro
2. Talib Kweli “Intro”
3. Notorious BIG “Kick In The Door” (J Dilla Remix)
4. Nas “Hope”
5. Ghostface “Whip Me With A Strap”
6. Jay-Z & The Escorts “Song Cry”
7. Smokey Robinson & The Miracles “A Legend In It’s Own Time”
8. Jadakiss “Why”
9. Redman “The Saga Continues”
10. Big L “Put It On”
11. M.O.P. “Pounds Up”
12. Black Thought & Peedi Crack “Freestyle”
13. Black Thought Interlude
14. Kanye West Interlude
15. Busta Rhymes, Rah Digga & Young Zee “Freestyle”
16. Mos Def “Miss Fat Booty”
17. Ghostface “Beauty Jackson”
18. Notorious B.I.G. “Things Done Changed”
19. The Roots “Can’t Stop This”
20. J Dilla “Won’t Do”

DJ Soul & Mad Decent Radio (2007)

Right after I dropped Assorted Donuts, the homie Diplo (from Hollertronix) asked me to do a Dilla mix for Mad Decent Radio… Well, it’s finally posted and the (copy and paste) links are below. Enjoy!
1. Pete Rock & Marley Marl “Intro”
2. J Dilla “Diamonds” (produced by Knottz)
3. Chris Rock “Interlude”
4. The Impressions “We Must Be In Love”
5. Pharoahe Monch “Love” (produced by Dilla)
6. Billy Paul “Let The Dollar Circulate”
7. Spacek “Dolla” (produced by Dilla)
8. J Dilla “Nothing Like This”
9. J Dilla & Dwele “Think Twice”
10. Frank N Dank “Where The Parties At?” [Inst] Original Mix

Mick Boogie and Busta Rhymes – Dillagence (Free Edition) (2007)
Mick Boogie and Busta Rhymes – Dillagence (Collector’s Edition)

A portion of proceeds from “Dillagence” will be donated to the “J. Dilla Foundation”

J Dilla – Jay Love Japan (2008)
J Dilla - Jay Love Japan
The real story of why Jay Love Japan has been delayed

That is not every J Dilla thing to happen last year or coming up but it is good summary for some of the things you may have missed. Watch for the next podcast coming this month called the Future Edition and have a great year.

J Dilla (Jay Dee): Donuts Mini-Review

This review would have eventually been written but due to the circumstances, I thought it would be appropriate to do it now. J Dilla aka Jay Dee was born on February 7, 1974 and passed away on February 10, 2006. Although he will be missed he will not be forgot because his music will live on. The way that J Dilla produced music was a rare talent and he put his soul into his music. Every time you pick up one of his albums, you are feeling and listening to his spirit. J Dilla (Jay Dee) Donuts was released on February 7th (his birth date). Donuts features 31 tracks of pure enjoyment. Every track feels as if you are on a musical journey. Airworks a track on Donuts is similar to a walk on a sand beach without shoes. It feels raw yet you love the texture and feel of it. For any inspiring or established producer, emcee, fan or person not to have this album is pure insanity. All of the instrumentals have the J Dilla sound but each one has a different mood. It is nice to hear each track back to back because you do not know what to expect next but you know it will be great. Donuts will stand the test of time and will build momentum once artists or producers find samples or tracks to continue the J Dilla legacy.

J Dilla-Donuts

Jay Dee Aka J Dilla Rest In Peace

Jay Dee aka J Dilla passes away at age 32 on Februray 10, 2006. This is really sad day in music because he had his own sound and it will be missed. He had finally hooked up with Stones Throw and I thought it was a perfect match. R.I.P. Jay Dee aka J Dilla I will play his new album Donuts, Slum Village and Jaylib all night in his memory. If you want a complete list of his music there is a list on Stones Throw. I am really at a lost for words.

Update: According to Stones Throw front page, J Dilla had suffered for over three years with an incurable blood disease, and had also been diagnosed with lupus.” They are also taking donations for his mother and family and all the info can be found on the front page.

Stones Throw Inspires Music Videos

Stones Throw does a lot for music such as dropping the latest Madlib track or delivering the soulful crooning of Aloe Blacc. Now it looks as if Stones Throw will be responsible for more music video content. With their 15 year anniversary, they decide they wanted the fans to get involved by having a video contest. With the vast catalog of Stones Throw aspiring music video directors only had thier own creative stopping them. The contest is now over and Stones Throw will be announcing the winners soon but you can still see all of the entries on Stones Throw’s Vimeo page. Here are some of my personal favorites but there are so many more to check out:

Even Zombies Get Down to Dilla

J Dilla / Dilla Says Go

Last Donut of the Night

ESP Music Agenda: Albums Of 2010

So it is that time of the year again where I wrap it up with my top picks of 2010. So much great hip-hop out there and a lot of it I missed but will try to make up for next year. So lets get into with the list in no particular order.

2 Hungry Bros. – Back For Seconds. Listen to some of your favorite emcees from Homeboy Sandman, 8thW1 to L.I.F.E. Long over the delicious beats by 2 Hungry Bros.

Agartha Audio – The Hollow Earth. Producer Dig Dug makes haunting beats to allow his Uncommon Record brethens to rip the hollow earth apart.

Animate Objects – Danya and the Fail Present: The Shit. The second song on this album entitled, “Grow Ass Man” is the mindset to be in listening to this fine collection.

Apollo Brown – The Reset. Apollo Brown has the magical red reset button to bring hip-hop back to the masses.

Bobo Meets Rhettmatic – BMR The Mixtape. Not necessarily a hip-hop album but from the genius of Bobo (Cypress Hill) and DJ Rhettmatic (Beat Junkies) how could you not love this collaboration of live instruments and turntables.

Boog Brown – Grind Season vol. 1. Boog Brown will dominate any other artist of any gender and does it with class.

Butta Verses – Slow Down Ha Ha (Single). Butta Verses is exactly what you get on this song.

Chosen Few – New World Symphony. New Hiero affilialtes want to start a new world symphony and they deliver on that.

Clan Destined – A Story Never Told. Nice concept album of how some emcees pay to get on a mixtape and then it turns into something they didn’t want.

Count Bass D – Hartsfield JAXson. R.I.P. Jax. Count Bass D & DJ Pocket pay homage to the Jax with his rhyme partners from Binkis and others. Count Bass D & DJ Pocket deliver a great album with lyrics, beats and cuts, what else can you as for.

Damu The Fudgemunk – How It Should Sound – Volume 1 & 2. On the intro Damu The Fudgemunk says, “…interpret the title how you wanna..” and with the way he crafts his beats show that this is how hip-hop should sound.

Diego Bernal – “Besides…”. Deigo Bernal is a new name to me but his beats bring back that boom bap sound with a spanish influence that needs to be heard to believe.

Dillon – Cupid’s Revenge: The Ain’t Shit Suite. First Dillon gets a whole album of beats from Paten Locke and now he gets beats from Batsauce. If the album cover doesn’t give it away then be prepared for a interstellar ride about Dillon’s take on women and love.

Donwill & Von Pea – The Sandwich Shop. Donwill & Von Pea two-thirds of Tanya Morgan lift the beats from The Roots – Sandwich EP and do it a great service by delivering satisfying words to the music.

DTMD – The Basics (EP). Dunc and Toine Makin Dollas paying homage to EPMD with their name. The Basics have a head nodding sound that make you feel like this is straight good music with out no filler.

Dumbfoundead – Music. Dumbfoundead gives us a peak at his genuis with this free mixtape with him flowing nicely on every beat given.

Eminem – Recovery. This is the Eminem I remember from his first couple of albums and brings a great recovery for music. His song for Proof (R.I.P.), “You’re Never Over” definitely celebrates his life.

Fashawn & DJ Green Lantern – XXL & Orisue Presents “Ode to Illmatic”. What can you say about a tribute album to one of the best lyricist and his best album from one of the best up and comers. I guess this is enough, go get it.

Freddie Joachim – A.M. Freddie Joachim gives us another instrumental album that can be listened in the A.M. or P.M. and give you the most compelling melodies to enjoy.

Future Ape Tapes – Temples. If this is your first journey to the sound temples then you are in for a treat because they have now honed their skills to give you the spaced out music for your ears.

Georgia Anne Muldrow & Declaime – SomeOthaShip. With Georgia Anne Muldrow & Declaime guiding this ship they craft something that is meant to be heard.

Guilty Simpson – OJ Simpson. Guilty Simpson lays the verses and Madlib lays the beats, do I need to say anything else.

Homeboy Sandman – The Good Sun. By far the one of my favorite albums of the year. Homeboy Sandman creates a whole album of  music that you can not stop listening to because of his flow and subject matter.

J Dilla – Donut Shop. J Dilla (R.I.P.) more of that neck breaking music from the producer that you all know and love including myself.

Jay Electronica – Exhibit C (Rob Viktum Remix). Rob Viktum takes a stab at remixing an already dope song with his own brand making it sound just as nice.

Joe Kickass – Let Me Introduce. Joe Kickass introduces himself as an emcee to watch for.JoeKickassLetMe

Joe Kickass – Mind Joe. After Joe Kickass introduces himself, he wants you to mind the lyrical gifts that he drops all over his full length.

Joe Scudda – Not Your Average Joe. Joe Scudda bombs your ears with his unrelenting flow that will not let you go even if you try to get away.

Junk Science – A Miraculous Kind Of Machine. Junk Science takes their signature hip-hop and  gives you some kind of miraculous thing to keep in your deck.

Kanye West – My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. The only man that I know in the industry that can do what he wants and still sell records. This time he is back on the some hip-hop stuff that will make you wonder where does he go from here.

Kenny Diaz Presents – The Lost Episodes V. 1 & 2. From 1995 to 1999 you can discover all of the lost hip-hop that still sounds contemporary for 2010.

Kooley High – B-sides and Rarities. Kooley High gives us all of the b-sides and rarities that we might have missed and you should thank them by getting this.

Little Brother – LeftBack. It is sad to say that this is the last Little Brother album but they go out with a bang and leave you waiting for their solo and different collaborations.

LMNO & Kev Brown – Selective Hearing Part 2. LMNO & Kev Brown lend their selective hearing to the godfather of soul, James Brown and make a soulful album of beats and rhymes.

Madlib – Madlib Medicine Show #1: Before The Verdict. The jury are back in and the verdict is that Madlib and Guilty Simpson do it again.

Madlib – Madlib Medicine Show #5: The History of the Loop Digga, 1990. Here is a record of Madlib beats from the 1990s and he even lets his CDP crew represent hard on this one.

Mainframe – e.q.e.p. If you like those joints that bump then you can get with Mainframe and Blu on this EP.

Marco Polo & Ruste Juxx – The eXXecution. The eXXecution is flawless with Marco Polo providing the beats that Ruste Juxx slaughters.

Meth, Ghost & Rae – Wu-Massacre. If you are a Wu fan and don’t have this album then it is time to get into the Wu-Massacre before you lose your life (or miss out on these three the hard way).

MF Borat – So Good to Me (Single). DigDug invents the perfect beat to let MF Doom make music so good to me.

MF GRIMM – You Only Live Twice: The Audio Graphic Novel. If MF GRIMM can do this with two lives then he needs to be granted many more.

MidaZ The BEAST – El MidaZ Affair. This is the MidaZ affair but invites us all to find out why he is a beast on the mic.

MidaZ The BEAST – Freestylin’ (Single). MidaZ freestylin’.

MidaZ The BEAST – Lost N Found (produced by Blue Sky Black Death) (Single). If this is in the lost and found then he must have more gems that we are missing.

Mos Dub – Mos Dub. Max Tannone remixes Mos Def with reggae dub music to give you a diverse sound clash.

MosEL – Just Thinking Out Loud. I am just thinking out loud that MosEL has made a something to be marveled.

Mr. Lif – Santa’s Got a Muthafuckin’ Uzi (Single). I always wanted this on vinyl because it was a limited edition cut out of Mr. Lif’s head with a santa cap but I have to settle for the craziest christmas rap of the year.

Murs and 9th Wonder – Fornever. Fourth album of Murs and 9th Wonder and they are fornever quitting.

Mystik Journeymen – Return 2 The Love. It is not a come back but a return to the love of hip-hop.

Nas & Damian “Jr. Gong” Marley – Distant Relatives. Nas and Jr. Gong come together to give you a familar style that is paired nicely.

Obii Say – The Vinyl Proxy 1965. The vinyl proxy used by emcee Obii Say and producer Sinitus Tempo gives you a vintage mixing of new material that succeed on each song.

Oddisee – Odd Spring. Spring beats from Oddisee that move you in ways you didn’t think possible.

Oddisee – Odd Winter. Winter time is the theme behind this frosty instrumental album that will warm up your soul.

Opio – Mark It Zero. The Big Lebowski infused joint from one of your favorite hieroglyphics members but don’t mark it zero, mark it sick.

Pack FM – I F*cking Hate Rappers. Pack FM explains while he can’t stand rappers by rapping. It makes senses when you listen to it.

Persevere & Style MiSia – The Vintage Edition EP. Persevere gives the vintage edtion of his catalog so you can remember why he does his music.

Rah Digga – Do Your Numbers (Single). Nottz produced single (that is not on the album) to promote her newest album entitled, “Classic” and it sounds that way.

Rapper Big Pooh – The Purple Tape. Rapper Big Pooh reminiscences over this purple tape that makes you want more.

Ras Kass & DJ Rhettmatic – A.D.I.D.A.S. The album that I knew he could always make with him just spitting complex words and supported and paid by fans and myself alike.

Reflection Eternal – Revolutions Per Minute. Reflection Eternal took a minute to release this one but it was worth the wait.

Rhymefest – El Che. Rhymefest needed to start a revolution to get his album out and it should catch on.

Rocky Reason – Part Dark Matter. She has an alien introduce this album and that gives the overall feel for this spaced out piece.

Ski Beatz – 24 Hour Karate School. Ski Beatz harnesses the backdrops for emcees to karate chop on this one.

Slum Village – Villa Manifesto. Maybe the last Slum Village album and with songs like, “Earl Flinn” show that they never lost it.

Strong Arm Steady – In Search Of Stoney Jackson. Strong Arm Steady are bless with a whole album of Madlib invasion beats and it makes for one of the best of the year.

Tame One – The Hell or High Water EP. Junkwaffel lays down just the right beats for Tame One to black out to.

Tarica June – Moonlight Revolution (The Mixtape). This one came out of no where with some of the nicest lyrics from an up and coming emcee.

The Heart & Brain – Mbodiment. With 23 tracks and no filler it is a great accomplishment with everything working for this album from beats to rhymes.

The Residents – Open House. Munshine and Saint definitely have a open house that you should visit and will return to frequently.

The Roots – How I Got Over. The Roots always get over because they don’t settle for nothing but quality music and this one does it right.

TiRon – MSTRD. I have always liked mustard better than ketchup and TiRon proves that it is also true with his sound.

Toki Wright – BlackMale. Toki Wright is going to catch you by surprise. It is hip-hop that makes you feel empowered.

Tone Liv – Path Train To Jersey. Took the ride to Jersey with Tone Liv and now I understand why it was worth the trip.

Trek Life & J.Bizness – Rhymes Within Reason. They rhyme and produce for a reason and it is to create ample music.

Turbo – ElectroRockv5: Long Live Lightning Level Lyricism. Fifth album in the ElectroRock series and he still defies how much better he can get.

Unique Assassin – Spelling Bee Champ. If Unique Assassin was put in a spelling bee contest then he could spit every letter and make it sound extravagant.

Von Pea – Pea’s Gotta Have It. He said this is the album he wanted to make in school. It takes you back while still sounding fresh.

WEB & I.D.e.A – God’s Favorites. WEB & I.D.e.A are becoming one of my favorites and can be yours too after you give it a listen.

X.O. – One. One. Ten. After killing it on Diamond District, he does it again and again all over his solo effort.