The hiphop world is mourning the sad loss of James "Jay Dee" Yancey , aka J Dilla, one of the most creative producers ever to fire up an MPC, who died Friday, February 10, due to complications from the chronic auto-immune disease lupus. He was just 32.
Best known as the co-founder of Detroit's Slum Village, Jay Dee developed a reputation for consistently coming up with head-turning beats through his work with A Tribe Called Quest, Busta Rhymes, Common, De La Soul, the Pharcyde, Erykah Badu and many other artists. A genuine music fan and studio workaholic who shunned the spotlight, Jay Dee never received the public acclaim his ingenuity and craftsmanship deserved. Yet his cutting-edge work was acknowledged by contemporaries Kanye West, Pharrell Williams and Madlib, who paid close attention to every track that carried a Jay Dee production credit.
His latest 31-track instrumental album, Donuts (Stones Throw), was issued on February 7, while two other recording projects, the solo album The Shining and the Jay Love Japan EP are finished and ready for release.