.

Pete Rock Mines Best of J Dilla on Posthumous "Jay Stay Paid"

April 28, 2009 1:51 PM ET

Rolling Stone caught a preview of Jay Stay Paid, the fifth solo album from celebrated hip-hop producer J Dilla and possibly the best posthumous rap record since the final releases of 2Pac and Biggie. The Detroit beatmaker, who passed away in 2006, had his hard-drives and beat tapes raided by producer Pete Rock and his mother, Maureen Yancey. According to a representative of his record label, Nature Sounds, the material spans the eight-year period between the sessions for A Tribe Called Quest's final album in 1998 to material written in hospital stays during the last months of his life.

The beats picked by Mr. Rock and Mrs. Yancey swing towards the heavier, more neckbreaking side of Dilla — distorted organs, morse code pianos, sucker-punching bass thwacks and impossibly snappy snares. Smoother than 2006's Donuts, but far less melancholy than its follow-up, The Shining, the new Jay Stay Paid rattles along with gnarly grooves made up of metallic clacking, Moroder-style synths and busy chimes. On first listen, one track appeared to be constructed from pieces of David Essex's 1974 hit "Rock On."

Pete Rock, one of Dilla's heros, extended some of ideas found on his computers and tapes, turning one-minute germs into fleshed-out songs. Other songs remain dirty, complete with the sirens and vocal drops of his internet-traded beat compilations. Far from a Biggie Duets-style cash-in, the only rappers adding their voices are rappers that Dilla either loved and/or collaborated with: Lil Fame of M.O.P., Havoc of Mobb Deep, Raekwon, DOOM, Dilla's younger brother Illa J and Black Thought of the Roots whose "Reality Check" builds a spirited anti-TV rant around a cluster of reality show titles.

Jay Stay Paid track list:

"KJay FM Dedication"
"King"
"I Told Yall"
"Lazer Gunne Funke"
"In the Night (Owl N Out) - While You Slept (I Crept)"
"Smoke" ft. Blu
"Blood Sport" ft. Lil Fame of M.O.P.
"caDILLAc"
"Expensive Whip"
"Kaklow (Jump On It)"
"Digi Dirt" ft. Phat Kat
"Dilla Bot Vs. the Hybrid" ft. Danny Brown and Constantine
"Milk Money"
"Spacecowboy Vs. Bobble Head"
"Reality Check" ft. Black Thought "On Stilts"
"Fire Wood Drumstix" ft. DOOM
"Glamour Sho75 (09)"
"10,000 Watts"
"9th Caller"
"Make It Fast (Unadulterated Mix)" ft. Diz Gibran
"24K Rap" ft. Havoc of Mobb Deep and Raekwon
"Big City"
"Pay Day" ft. Frank Nitty of Frank N' Dank
"See That Boy Fly" ft. Illa J and Cue D
"Coming Back"
"Mythsysizer"
"KJay and We Out"

To read the new issue of Rolling Stone online, plus the entire RS archive: Click Here

prev
Music Main Next
Around the Web
Powered By ZergNet
Daily Newsletter

Get the latest RS news in your inbox.

Sign up to receive the Rolling Stone newsletter and special offers from RS and its
marketing partners.

X

We may use your e-mail address to send you the newsletter and offers that may interest you, on behalf of Rolling Stone and its partners. For more information please read our Privacy Policy.

Song Stories

“San Francisco Mabel Joy”

Mickey Newbury | 1969

A country-folk song of epic proportions, "San Francisco Mabel Joy" tells the tale of a poor Georgia farmboy who wound up in prison after a move to the Bay Area found love turning into tragedy. First released by Mickey Newbury in 1969, it might be more familiar through covers by Waylon Jennings, Joan Baez and Kenny Rogers. "It was a five-minute song written in a two-minute world," Newbury said. "I was told it would never be cut by any artist ... I was told you could not use the term 'redneck' in a song and get it recorded."

More Song Stories entries »
 
www.expandtheroom.com