It’s been 10 years since the death of legendary producer J Dilla and to celebrate his life BBE are re-releasing his posthumous album The Shining on 7″ vinyl.
But something else quite special has also emerged.
Thanks to Boiler Room we now have access to the music J Dilla was listening to in the build up to Welcome 2 Detroit’s release, Dilla’s debut, which was given to co-founder of BBE Records Peter Adarkwah on his first trip to Detroit with Dilla.
Here’s the story of the tape as told by Adarkwah:
“Towards the end of 1999 or early 2000, it was my first trip to Detroit. James (Yancey aka Dilla) was working with James Poyser on Erykah’s Mama’s Gun LP. We’d checked out a couple of record stores (I can’t recall where or their names) and this tape was playing in the car.
“I recall Think Twice was on the tape and I suggested there and then that he do a cover with Erykah for the BBE album. We didn’t get the Erykah feature, but people sure remember James’ cover.
“We drove past a sign, it said Welcome To Detroit and I suggested that would be a good name for the album. When we pulled over James gave me the tape and said this is yours, or words to that effect.”
There’s bound to be something on the tape to inspire aspiring hip hop producers, with deep cuts from heavyweights like Stevie Wonder and Michael Jackson featured on the 46-minute tape giving an intimate look into what Dilla was listening to when driving his car or relaxing at home.