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Woke up to this new De La Soul x J Dilla mix. Not sure how I feel about it, but mostly I think it’s recycled Dilla beat fatigue. Like most Dilla fans, I’ve listened to just about every Dilla production that was commercially released while he was alive and about 3 years after he passed, countless amounts of times and am married to those versions in my mind.

No one’s going to rock Chino XL’s “Don’t Say A Word” the way he did in my mind, because that’s how I’ve heard it 10,000 times before. So hearing De La lyrics from 1989 over some of these beats feels like an epic waste of my time.

I miss Dilla’s production, but not enough to hear every Tom, Dick and Harry rocking over the same beats over and over again trying to add their own spin. Even if they were actual collaborators with Dilla at his peak.

“Saying the producers name all over the track”

I feel like, at this point. If you wasn’t a Dilla fan while he was alive, or within a short window after he passed, it’s too late to convert you.

It’s going on a decade since he’s passed now. There are lots of producers out there making great shit RIGHT NOW that were inspired by his style and approach, and no blasphemy intended, but I’m enjoying a lot of that stuff more than some of these dusty beat tape joints he probably never intended to be heard outside of his own studio, at least not in that unpolished state.

Racing to rap on these beats when you aint know the man, never met him, and weren’t on that vibe when he was alive and active, seems like trying to get in the club for a drink at 3:50am when you know it shut down at 4am.

I’d rather celebrate his legacy through all the new producers he’s inspired whether they know they’ve been inspired or not, and K.I.M.

And I don’t mean that like you are not allowed to be a Dilla fan if you wasn’t on the wave when he was alive or outside of like 3-4 years after he passed, I just mean there are ppl that are into hip hop that were around when he was active and didn’t give a shit. If you don’t get it by now, there’s no converting you. So for ppl that are gonna discover Dilla, and to a greater extent the Detroit sound, organically, let them hear the stuff that came out commercially the way they were supposed to have heard it. Not your hi jacked version. Screams or at least whispers “Look at me, the one that lead you to Dilla”.

Also, I never wanna hear Rick Ross name check Dilla in a rhyme ever again in my life.

Posdnuos is top 3 or 5 for me. De La is my fave rap group behind MOP. So there’s that disclaimer.


Founder of Rappers I Know and Art Director to the Stars...of the Underground. Follow him on Twitter @fwmj.

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