James DeWitt Yancey, better known as Jay Dee or J Dilla, carved out an amazing catalog for himself while he was alive, having produced and worked with artists ranging from A Tribe Called Quest, Busta Rhymes, Common, The Roots, Mos Def, Talib Kweli, Janet Jackson, Erykah Badu, D’Angelo, Raphael Saadiq and a so many others.
A Detroit native, Dilla became known for his clever manipulation and experimentation with Hip Hop music, blending it with everything from atmospheric techno sounds to East Indian music and other influences, crafting classic music on albums including The Pharcyde’s Labcabincalifornia, Janet Jackson’s The Velvet Rope and Common’s Like Water for Chocolate and many more.
Sadly, J Dilla was later diagnosed with lupus and eventually lost his battle with the disease on February 10, 2006 at the age of 32. But Dilla’s music lives on to this day through continuous tributes year round throughout the country and worldwide, the work of his mother, Maureen “Ma Dukes” Yancey, The J Dilla Foundation, and of course through the second annual “Dilla Day Detroit”, which will take place at The Fillmore Theatre in Detroit on Saturday, February 9 and will feature performances from Detroit artists Royce the 5’9”, Frank N Dank, Illa J (J Dilla’s younger brother), and none other than Talib Kweli and Miguel Atwood-Ferguson as the headliners.
In addition to “Dilla Day Detroit”, a new posthumous J Dilla album called Music From the Lost Scrolls was made available on February 5 on iTunes and in stores. And beyond the concert on Saturday night, “Dilla Youth Day” will be held the same weekend at Detroit’s 5e Gallery from noon to 4 p.m.
The youth event will feature the Urban Strings Youth Orchestra, local dance teams Hardcore Detroit and Motor City Rockerz, and a Hip Hop beat making workshop.
Overall, the influence of J Dilla has reached epic proportions with tributes happening all over the world this month in New York, Washington D.C., Los Angeles, London and Australia. And “Dilla Day Detroit” will be the centerpiece, celebrating the life and the music of one of the greatest Hip Hop producers ever.
For tickets and more information, visit the following link: