Tru Skool Tuesday: Dilla Day

Not many names excite hip hop heads the way “Dilla” does. Through his work with A Tribe Called Quest (ATCQ), Busta Rhymes, Erykah Badu and his own group Slum Village, the producer’s name has become synonymous with legendary.

Without knowing it, i became a J. Dilla fan when ATCQ’s “Stressed Out” hit the college radio waves. My appreciation grew with De La Soul’s “Stakes Is High,” the Pharcyde’s “Runnin'” and many other hip hop classicsSometime between Common’s Like Water for Chocolate and Ms. Badu’s “Didn’t You Know”/Mama’s Gun, i began to consider myself a “true” Dilla fan.

Now, several years after his death, a number of documentaries have taught me just how expansive his catalog and influence were/are. Only DJ Premier, Diddy (yes, you read it correctly), Pete Rock, and a few others have impacted hip hop music and culture to the degree that Dilla has. I don’t know if any have made such a large imprint as he did in the short time that he was actively involved in the music industry.

For that reason — his influence on and contribution to hip hop culture — i’m making Feb. 7 Dilla day! Just kidding… sort of. To celebrate, here are a couple of my favorite Dilla songs.

What are some of your faves?

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2 thoughts on “Tru Skool Tuesday: Dilla Day

    1. Brotha Onaci Post author

      YES!!! That’s a good one. I’m loving the Miguel Atwood-Ferguson rendition too. Thanks for sharing.

      With regard to change, one of the producers who comes to mind when i think of “replacements”(not that there ever will be one for Dilla or PR or Primo, etc.) is TallBlackGuy. But i also simultaneously realized that TBG is probably a student of Dilla… he’s def has his own distinct sound. But the Dilla (and some would say it’s a broader, Detroit thing) influence is pretty clear to me. Bless.

      Reply

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