J Dilla's influence on the game of hip hop is impossible to overstate and exaggerate. It isn't hyperbole when people state that he changed the course of production twice, or that his sample dives and chops are the stuff of legends. His music wasn't ahead of its time, it was right on time; wholly capturing the sonic zeitgeist of the period and then experimenting with the movement to its master's desires. From fusing jazz into pop music or hip hop into soul, Dilla found a way to navigate between every genre beautifully, while staying true to his original roots. He is the mind behind and composer of some of modern music's biggest hits and most innovative soundscapes.
Unfortunately, he was taken away from us too soon. In 2006, he lost his battle to lupus, while still in the height of his career. While it was a tragedy, like many great minds, Dilla was a workaholic and obsessive when it came to his passion. There are an innumerable amount of demos, recorded ideas, lost collaborations, and singles spread out between his hometown Detroit and Los Angeles. Almost every year, some of this rare gems are released to the public, creating a frenzy online from fans and critics alike. 2014 will follow this trend, when Give Em What They Want hits store shelves on May 6th.
[soundcloud url="https://api.soundcloud.com/tracks/144860974" params="color=ff5500" width="100%" height="166" iframe="true" /]
"Give Em What They Want" is the first single from the six song project, and features production from Jay Dee himself. Rapping wise, it definitely leaves something to be desired, like a lot of Dilla rhymes. However, if you listening for the emceeing, you are missing the point; the beat is once again amazing. The bass line will literally force your head to bop up and down, while the percussion forces your body to move in weird ways. He employs some interesting key sounds throughout that really give off a bounce vibe, which he smoothly raps in time to. The vocals might be the best part though, especially the few that come in during the chorus. They are beautifully sung and utilized, definitely worth the price of admission.
Give Em What They Want comes out next month on the 6th, which means more Dilla is right around the corner. Only five tracks long, it is more of a quick snack than a full meal,but it is welcomed nonetheless. Keep your eye on Rappcats website for more information on the release and artist.