Illa J, the younger brother of the late, revered producer J Dilla, has informed AllHipHop.com that his pending debut on Delicious Vinyl will feature unreleased tracks from his older sibling.
The 21-year-old Illa J feels he is ready to not only show his talents as an artist, but will also illuminate the spiritual bond he still holds with his departed brother.
Dilla was twelve years older than me, Illa J explained to AllHipHop.com. So back in the day in Detroit I was just a little kid, sitting on the stairs in our house, watching him make those first beats for Slum Village. So I always felt my brothers tracks and had an instinct for what I wanted to do over them.
J Dilla passed away in February 2006 due to complications from lupus, leaving behind an extraordinary collection of unused beats.
The unreleased tracks date from Dillas time working on Pharcydes sophomore LP Labcabincalifornia in 1995 through 1998.
Delicious Vinyl founder Michael Ross elaborated on how the pieces came into Illa Js possession.
From 95 through 98 Jay Dee was my go-to guy for hot beats and remixes. He was always making beats, always, Ross detailed. So there was a select amount of tracks that he composed for me during that time, only they never got used. When I finally met Illa J last year, I gave him a CD containing those unreleased beats.
The timing worked in Illas favor, as the fledgling musician had just relocated to Los Angeles and built his own studio.
With his older brothers lost recordings, he began crafting his own unique sound with Dillas recording equipment.
Through this process, Illa J feels his brother has imparted more life lessons to him from beyond the grave.
One of the things I learned from my brother is that you dont get that much time, so make the most of it, Illa Jay reflected. Thats why Ive decided to dedicate my life to doing what I love: music. To work with Mike and Delicious Vinyl, that label that released those hits my brother made with The Pharcyde [Runnin, Drop] is really special.
Ross wholeheartedly agrees, and further elaborates on a spiritual, higher purpose he sees in the musical legacy of Jay Dee and Illa Js potential as a new artist.
Illa J can write, sing, play and rap. Not just a little bit of each-hes really the total package, Ross stated excitedly. And anyone who loves Jay Dees music is going to flip out when they hear what his younger brothers been laying down. For over a decade these beats have been waiting in the vault for this moment. Its like Jay Dee made these tracks with an extrasensory purpose, so that Illa J could make this album. There is no question that is exactly what they were meant for. These beats belong to Illa J, theyre his birthright, and I really believe Jay Dee would be proud of what his brother is doing.
A set release date has not been confirmed at press time.