Press Play On Jeru The Damaja’s 1991-1992 Guru-Produced Demo (Audio)
Jeru The Damaja emerged as one of—if not the biggest star of the Gang Starr Foundation. The Brooklyn, New York MC would sign with Guru’s Ill Kid Records in the early 1990s, before releasing acclaimed DJ Premier-produced albums The Sun Rises In The East and Wrath Of The Math. Both Top 40 debuts released in 1995 and 1996, respectively these albums flanked ‘Ru appearances alongside the Clockers iteration of Spike Lee’s “Crooklyn Dodgers,” and numerous Gang Starr album appearances. While Heads would first hear “the Dirty Rotten Scoundrel” on Daily Operation‘s “I’m The Man,” the Damaja was in the lab with Guru even before then.
Slice Of Spice is releasing Jeru’s 1991 and 1992 demo recordings, produced by Guru. The late Gang Starr MC would co-produce, with Premier, later album material. The three previously tracks are made available for stream (via Jeru’s Soundcloud page), prior to the February 15 vinyl pre-order. Guru’s Jazz influences can be heard on “God Of Rhyming” with the bass and drum arrangement. Notably, Jeru’s jagged flow can be heard more than two years before his Payday Records debut. Further, the Ill Kid MC was reppin’ for D.R.S. early on.
In 2014, Jeru The Damaja released The Hammer EP. Although he and Guru would creatively and personally part ways in the late 1990s, Jeru appeared on Group Home’s tribute album, Gifted Unlimited Rhymes Universal, released shortly after Guru’s death.
Previously, Slice Of Spice has worked with Lord Finesse and D.I.T.C., as well as K-Def.