Release Date: Jun 2, 2009
Record label: Nature Sounds
Dilla will always be with us. I don't mean that in just the spiritual sense, or in the way that people are going to be feeling his legacy for a while, though god knows I must've reviewed a dozen albums over the past year that were either in tribute to him or featured some of his beats or both. What I'm talking about is that he'll always be with us in the sense that the amount of material he recorded over the decade-plus before his death was completely overwhelming.
Jay Stay Paid is a set of stray beats plucked by Pete Rock and Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey, Dilla's mom. Presented like a radio show slash mixtape, with snippets from radio interviews, nonintrusive interjections from Rock and Ma Dukes, and brief testimonials as part of the fabric -- not to mention an appearance from Illa J, Dilla's younger brother -- the hourlong program contains productions laid down during the last eight years of Dilla's life. Any producer not attempting to make a run at the charts would likely love to claim much of this work as his or her own; scholars won't be shocked that Dilla banked discards of this quality and range, but it's another thing to have a fraction of the man's surplus lovingly converted into a finished product.
Review Summary: J Dilla remains consistent as always.To a casual fan of hip-hop the name J-Dilla may not mean a lot. If you’re more interested in Anticon or Wu-Tang than the genre as a whole 'Jay Stay Paid' may not be a big deal. Change that. Like every genre hip-hop's gems are found underneath the rough and Dilla’s work puts him in the position of being the most influential and progressive producer in the last twenty years.
Posthumous albums, especially in hip-hop, get a bad rap (no pun intended). And 99% of the time, there is a great reason for that. Just look at 2Pac’s after-death legacy, though it’s tough to call it a legacy considering how tarnished it’s become. While it’s obvious he recorded hundreds of hooks and verses in his shortened existence, he kept those unreleased because they were likely not up to snuff.
The passing of hip-hop giant J Dilla caused a significant impact on the community he bestowed his music upon. Countless tributes, dedications and remembrances have honored the late, great, Detroit producer and there doesn’t seem to be an end in sight. One of Jay Dee’s personal heroes was fellow producer, Pete Rock. Much like Rock, Dilla placed an emphasis on the vivid style of his drums and on sampling old, soul, hidden gems.
On a Friday night in New York City, a tall man was spotted in the middle of the floor of Santos Party House, the nightclub owned by Andrew W.K. The man stood inert and clothed in black from the base of his denim ankles, across his leather sleeves, along his trimmed beard and the rims of his glasses, up to the summit of his fitted, precisely cocked cap. He carried the proportions and expressionless face of a bouncer.