Marcus On The Beats: J Dilla

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J Dilla is a hip hop royalty, but his regal position is in despite the fact that he was a pretty average rapper. His status was built by being on the best creator of beats of his generation, if ever. I have no doubt that even non hip hop will recognise a Dilla beat. Not only is his sound distinctive; lush, soulful with the ability to tease different things out of the beat with every listen, he always strode both the over and under ground scenes.

Ask These New Puritans, The Horrors, Joy Orbison, The XX and Mystery Jets – all who have cited the man know as James Dewitt Yancey to his mother as an influence.

J Dilla died on February 10th 2006, we are fast approaching the anniversary of his death. I urge GIITTV readers to check out his legacy, with perhaps his ‘Donuts’ album a good starting point and his collaboration with Madlib ‘Champion Sound’ another.

32 was no age for one of hip-hop greatest hidden talents to pass, it’s important we always try to remind people of how great J Dilla was, and how greater he could have been.

God is in the TV is an online music and culture fanzine founded in Cardiff by the editor Bill Cummings in 2003. GIITTV Bill has developed the site with the aid of a team of sub-editors and writers from across Britain, covering a wide range of music from unsigned and independent artists to major releases.