Jay Dee, J Dilla, Dilla — Detroit-born hip-hop producer James Dewitt Yancey went by many names, but his rhythmic brilliance was always the same, whether he was producing for artists like The Pharcyde, Busta Rhymes, A Tribe Called Quest or his own group Slum Village, to name a few. Today, 16 years after his untimely death at age 32 from a rare blood disease, the impact of his industry-changing sound is still heard throughout music. That impact, and the story behind it, is the subject of the new book “Dilla Time: The Life and Afterlife of J Dilla, the Hip-Hop Producer Who Reinvented Rhythm” by Dan Charnas. Equal parts biography, musicology and cultural history, Charnas tells the story of Yancey’s genius, and how he took music’s rhythm standards of “straight time” and “swing time” and created a whole new standard: Dilla Time.
The Genius of Hip-Hop Producer J Dilla Shines in New Book 'Dilla Time' by Dan Charna
Dan Charnas is author of "Dilla Time." (Noah Stephens)
Dan Charnas, author, "Dilla Time: The Life and Afterlife of J Dilla, the Hip-Hop Producer Who Reinvented
Rhythm"; associate professor, NYU Tisch’s Clive Davis Institute of Recorded Music