Archives

Finding The GOAT Group: Black Star vs. Slum Village. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’ annual competition series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry (which has been determined), including the possibility... Read more

Finding The GOAT Group: The Pharcyde vs. Blackalicious. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Group,” the fourth installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest collectives vying for the #1 spot. Sixty-two groups have been pre-selected by a panel of experts, and one slot will be reserved for a wild-card entry, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to... Read more

Slum Village Release A Lost Song With Q-Tip From The Fantastic Era (Audio)

Twenty years ago, Slum Village finished recording an album that would forever change the trio's path. Fantastic, Vol. 2 took two additional years to release after its completion. Even after unexpected delays, shifting to indie label resources, and a newly-crowded Detroit Rap scene in the marketplace, the LP thrived as... Read more

Common & Questlove Share Stories About Bargaining For Beats From J Dilla & D’Angelo

On January 25, Common was the guest for the first live audience recording of Questlove Supreme. At Manhattan's Gramercy Theater, Questlove, Laiya, Suga Steve, and Boss Bill interviewed Common for nearly two hours. Ambrosia For Heads was front and center for the event. Today (February 21), that interview is available... Read more

Jay Electronica, Obie Trice & Bumpy Knuckles To Perform At Dillatroit Tribute Concert

February 10 marks 12 years since the untimely death of J Dilla. In James Yancey's hometown of Detroit, Michigan the third annual Dillatroit concert will take place in his memory. On Sunday, several collaborators, peers, and admirers of the Slum Village co-founder are confirmed to perform at the event held... Read more

An New Video Shows The Rise Of The Soulquarians & Why Things Fell Apart

During the week of special engagements leading up to last Sunday's Grammy Awards, The Roots held a four-day residency at The Gramercy Theatre in Manhattan. During the day, the three-time Grammy-winners programmed events that included the first live taping of Questlove Supreme with guest Common, as well as a Black... Read more

The Secrets To J Dilla’s Production Style Are Revealed In A Fantastic New Video

For anyone wanting to understand why Detroit producer J Dilla is so revered more than one decade after his untimely death, a new video by journalist Estelle Caswell in the Vox "Earworm" series offers the perfect starting-point. This mini-documentary takes a close look at Dilla’s radical re-invention of drums, his... Read more

Illa J Welcomes Listeners Into His & J Dilla’s Childhood Home (Video)

Detroit, Michigan’s own Illa J, younger brother of J Dilla, is dropping his third solo studio album Home on Jakarta Records later this month. He has released a fittingly personal video for the project’s title track, shot on the steps of the Yancey boys’ childhood home. Illa J’s Latest is... Read more

Kanye West Recalls Watching J Dilla Work. He Compares Him To Quincy (Video)

In 2005, Kanye West's G.O.O.D. Music was the label responsible for Common's sixth album, Be. That album, which was Common's first Top 10 release (debuting at #2) was critical to the Chicago, Illinois MC's career, and transformation. While West was responsible for nine of the LP's 11 tracks, the other... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer (The Final Battle): DJ Premier vs. J Dilla. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Producer,” the third installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest producers vying for the #1 spot. Thirty producers were pre-selected by a panel of experts, and two slots will be reserved for wild-card entries, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no... Read more

J Rocc Shows What Biggie And Dilla Would Have Sounded Like Together…Incredible (Audio)

In their lives, Biggie Smalls and J Dilla never worked together. Jay Dee would produce for B.I.G. affiliates like Busta Rhymes, Keith Murray, and Heavy D, but would never work with Bad Boy Records in those mid-'90s glory years. While almost all of Biggie's unused reels have been released on... Read more

DJ Premier & J Dilla Are The Finalists In The Finding The GOAT Producer Competition

Today (March 6), Round 4 voting closed for “Finding The GOAT Producer.” This competition, launched in early January, beginning with 32 producers (including two Wild Card inductees into the bracket). The 32 eventually became a pack of 16, then an Elite 8, next a Final 4, and now presents its... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: J Dilla vs. Dr. Dre. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Producer,” the third installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest producers vying for the #1 spot. Thirty producers were pre-selected by a panel of experts, and two slots will be reserved for wild-card entries, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: J Dilla vs. A Tribe Called Quest. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Producer,” the third installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest producers vying for the #1 spot. Thirty producers were pre-selected by a panel of experts, and two slots will be reserved for wild-card entries, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: The Elite 8 Has Been Determined

Last night (February 20), Round 2 voting closed for “Finding The GOAT Producer.” This competition, launched in early January, began with 32 producers (including two Wild Card inductees into the bracket). The 32 eventually became a pack of 16, and as of now, has reached its Elite 8 in this... Read more

Kxng Crooked Reps For J Dilla On A Freestyle That Breathes New Life Into Hip-Hop (Audio)

Half of Slaughterhouse has been heating up 2017 with a barrage of freestyle displays. As Royce 5'9 has smashed Mondays by tackling several popular Rap tracks du jour, Kxng Crooked (fka Crooked I) has been putting in work on more esoteric tracks. In a month that honors J Dilla's life... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: J Dilla vs. Madlib. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Producer," the third installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest producers vying for the #1 spot. Thirty producers were pre-selected by a panel of experts, and two slots will be reserved for wild-card entries, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: The Sweet 16 Has Been Determined

Last night (February 5), Round 1 voting closed for "Finding The GOAT Producer." That round, launched in early January, began with 32 producers (including two Wild Card inductees into the bracket). As of today's tiebreaker between Organized Noize vs. Erick Sermon (which was within less than 1% when the polls closed),... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: No I.D. vs. A Tribe Called Quest. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Producer” begins. The third installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest producers vying for the #1 spot. Thirty producers were pre-selected by a panel of experts, and two slots will be reserved for wild-card entries, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no deserving... Read more

Finding The GOAT Producer: J Dilla vs. MF DOOM. Who Is Better?

“Finding the GOAT Producer” begins. The third installment of Ambrosia For Heads’s annual battle series features Hip-Hop’s greatest producers vying for the #1 spot. Thirty producers were pre-selected by a panel of experts, and two slots will be reserved for wild-card entries, including the possibility for write-in candidates, to ensure no deserving... Read more

Hear J Dilla’s Unreleased Demos & His Story Told By The Man Who Helped Launch His Career (Audio)

J Dilla's sprawling discography can be a challenge to process. The Detroit, Michigan visionary was a producer, an MC, a member of many groups, a musician, and somebody who loved a laissez-faire approach to his music. In his 32 years of life, he made lots of it. In his career,... Read more

One Of Phife Dawg’s Final Recordings Releases & It’s Trademark Malik (Audio)

At the close of the '90s, A Tribe Called Quest would go on an extensive recording hiatus. Q-Tip, Phife Dawg, and Ali Shaheed Muhammad would all pursue solo and side interests. For Phife, that was Ventilation: Da LP. Released on Groove Attack Records in 2000, "the 5 Foot Assassin" would... Read more

A New Documentary On The Making Of J Dilla’s “The Diary” Features The Man, Himself (Video)

While not his first posthumous album, J Dilla's The Diary stands apart from those of the past. The Mass Appeal and PayJay collaboration on the sixth J Dilla album since his 2006 death is comprised entirely of unissued material but what makes it more unique is its inclusion of the late... Read more

J Dilla, Nas & Madlib’s Visual Is So Sick It’s Hallucinogenic (Video)

A week and a half ago, J Dilla's The Diary album finally released. Ten years after the producer/MC's death, his family and the Nas-backed Mass Appeal Records delivered an album that began in 2001 to the fans at last. The final Dilla vocal album, this was what was on James... Read more

One Of J Dilla’s Most Respected Collaborative Peers Makes A Beat From Scratch In His Style (Video)

Nottz and J Dilla had a colorful history. Both production purists, these MC/producer double-threats each benefited from the support of Busta Rhymes, Skillz, and Ghostface Killah placements at critical career junctures. Thereby, the artists from Norfolk, Virginia and Detroit, Michigan (respectively) ended up on a few albums together. More than... Read more

Open The Book On J Dilla’s Last Vocal LP, “The Diary” (Album Stream)

Today (April 15) marks the true release of J Dilla's The Diary album. First recorded and plotted in 2001 and 2002, the project was then shelved by MCA Records. Seeing the album properly delivered to fans was a top priority of James Yancey at the time of his 2006 death.... Read more

From Kanye To Pete Rock, Get The Story On J Dilla’s “Diary” Over 15 Years (Audio)

Today (April 15), J Dilla's The Diary releases. The album featuring contributions from Nas, Snoop Dogg, Pete Rock, and many others has come a long way since its early 2000s plans to be an MCA Records release. Sadly, that never happened as planned. In 2016, it has been more than... Read more

Nas & J Dilla On A Madlib Track Is A Powerful Bookmark In “The Diary” (Audio)

In two days (April 15), J Dilla's posthumous album, The Diary, will finally release. With its beginnings dating back to the opening of the 2000s, the then-MCA Records solo artist and current Slum Village member plugged away at the LP that would never see release before his February 2006 death.... Read more

Elzhi Freestyles Off The Top Of The Head To A J Dilla Donut (Video)

With his sophomore studio album Lead Poison now released, Elzhi is the latest guest on Tony Touch's Toca Tuesdays radio show. There, the Detroit, Michigan MC veteran was not immune to the hot seat. He tackles two beats. Fans of Motown music will particularly enjoy El' buckling down on Dilla's... Read more

Like J Dilla, Blu & Miguel Proved To Be Diamonds In The Rough (Audio)

More than 10 years since the game-changing producer/MC passed away, J Dilla's music is living strong in 2016. Next week, Dilla's family will release an album he worked on for many years in the early 2000s, The Diary. In May, Dilla's family will re-release another title from his beloved discography.... Read more

J Dilla’s Love For West Coast Rap Shines Alongside Snoop & Kokane (Audio)

Before J Dilla started working on his MCA Records debut known as The Diary, Slum Village had found great success with Fan-Tas-Tic, Vol. 2. While the LP memorably connected Jay Dee, Baatin, and T3 with the sounds of Q-Tip, D'Angelo, and DJ Jazzy Jeff, Kurupt was also a sought out... Read more

Nas Plays A New J Dilla Collabo, Produced By Madlib (Video)

In October of 2014, Nas began a public pursuit of bringing recognition to the music of J Dilla. During a Mass Appeal Records release party for Run The Jewels' second album, the investor in the label shared his take on a Dilla "donut" beat. The track would be called "The... Read more

Black Thought Reveals What Artists Used To Do To Get J Dilla’s Best Beats (Video)

Between 1999 and 2006, The Roots would work with J Dilla (f/k/a Jay Dee) a number of times. Then label-mates at MCA Records, Dilla produced elements of the Grammy-nominated platinum Things Fall Apart album. While "Dynamite!" would make the LP, "New Year's @ Jay Dee's" would be a hidden jewel... Read more

A.G. Reveals All-Star Lineup For Next Solo LP & Discusses D.I.T.C. Reunion (Video Interview)

A.G. was one of the performers on hand at this past weekend's second annual J Dilla Weekend in Miami, Florida. Like fellow performers T3 (Slum Village), Black Thought, Royce Da 5'9, Diamond D, and honoree Pete Rock, Andre The Giant worked with Dilla before the producer/MC's February 10, 2006 death.... Read more

Pete Rock Receives The First Annual J Dilla Imhotep Award From Ma Dukes (Video)

Last night (February 5), the first annual J Dilla Imhotep Award was presented at J Dilla Weekend Festival in Miami, Florida. The event is hosted and partially organized by J Dilla's mother, Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey. Just five days before the 10th anniversary of her son's untimely death, Ma Duke's... Read more

9th Wonder Explains How J Dilla Changed The Sound of Hip-Hop and Fathered “Neo Soul” In The Process (Interview)

After the ascendance of greats like DJ Premier, Pete Rock and Q-Tip in the 90s. There was a new wave of producers that would come to prominence in the 2000s who would carry the torch for Hip-Hop and take it in new directions. This new generation of beatmakers included the... Read more

Kanye West’s The College Dropout vs. Slum Village’s Fantastic, Vol. 2. Which Is Better?

One year ago, Ambrosia For Heads launched a debate among its readers seeking to answer one of Hip-Hop’s most hotly-contested questions: who is the greatest MC of all time? “Finding The GOAT MC” lasted between September 2014 and May 2015, engaging millions of readers and ultimately producing its winner, as... Read more

The Third Member Of JayLib Comes Through With A Fresh J Dilla Mix

Los Angeles, California-based producer/turntablist J Rocc has been one of the biggest purveyors of J Dilla's legacy. The Beat Junkies co-founder and official third member of JayLib (J Dilla & Madlib's group) is among the supporters of next month's J Dilla Weekend (February 5-7) in Miami, Florida. As he has... Read more

Black Thought & J.Period Are Performing A Live J Dilla Mixtape At Dilla Weekend (Audio)

As announced earlier this week, Black Thought and J.Period have been added to the 2016 J Dilla Weekend lineup. Taking place February 5-7, the Miami, Florida event will feature concert performances, panel discussions, a Discogs record swap meet, art exhibits, and much more. With the addition of The Roots' MC... Read more

This Far Reaching Mix Sprinkles Some Of J Dilla’s Best & Rarest Donuts

Next month (February 5-7), the second annual J Dilla Weekend will take place in Miami, Florida. The three-day event features music performances, exhibits, panels, and more. Pre-sale ticket packages are available. At present, Dilla's onetime group Slum Village, and a host of collaborators are signed on for the event. Additionally,... Read more

De La Soul Are Performing Together to Honor J Dilla During His Tribute Weekend

In late December, the second annual J Dilla Weekend was announced. The Miami, Florida event will take place the weekend of February 5-7, and will be hosted by Dilla's mother, Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey. With Slum Village, Royce Da 5'9", Rapsody & 9th Wonder, Blu & Exile, Chuck Strangers, A-F-R-O,... Read more

Little Brother’s The Listening vs. Slum Village’s Fantastic, Vol. 2. Which Is Better?

One year ago, Ambrosia For Heads launched a debate among its readers seeking to answer one of Hip-Hop’s most hotly-contested questions: who is the greatest MC of all time? “Finding The GOAT MC” lasted between September 2014 and May 2015, engaging millions of readers and ultimately producing its winner, as... Read more

DJ Premier, Slum Village, Royce Da 5’9″, Rapsody & 9th Wonder To Perform At 2016 J Dilla Weekend

The second annual J Dilla Weekend has been announced. The Miami, Florida extension of Detroit, Michigan's longstanding J Dilla Day will take place on February 5-7, 2016. Hosted by Maureen "Ma Dukes" Yancey (Dilla's mother), the event continues a rich tradition of celebrating James Yancey's life and music through performances,... Read more

Lupe Fiasco’s Food & Liquor vs. Common’s Like Water For Chocolate. Which Is Better?

One year ago, Ambrosia For Heads launched a debate among its readers seeking to answer one of Hip-Hop’s most hotly-contested questions: who is the greatest MC of all time? “Finding The GOAT MC” lasted between September 2014 and May 2015, engaging millions of readers and ultimately producing its winner, as... Read more

20 Years Later, The Pharcyde’s “Labcabincalifornia” Is Far Greater Than The Credit It Received (Editorial)

20 years ago today (November 14, 1995), The Pharcyde released its second album, Labcabincalifornia. Coming a full three years after their Bizarre Ride II the Pharcyde debut, the LP was highly anticipated, but for many, it didn't live up to the expectations put forth by the group's first release. Home... Read more

Plug In To J Dilla’s Posthumous Dillatronic Album For A Free, Full Stream

In a seemingly never-ending series of releases, J Dilla's Dillatronic has arrived for full preview. Available for pre-order and releasing Friday (October 30), this collection of beats taps into James Yancey's Electronic sensibilities, from a Detroit, Michigan city largely responsible for impacting the Techno genre. Different than Donuts, these are... Read more

J Dilla Blew Speakers Fusing Hip-Hop With Electronic. That’s The Subject Of New Album.

In J Dilla's more than 11 years making music, the Detroit, Michigan producer/MC had a wide range of influences. James Yancey (a/k/a Jay Dee) would make popular records out of sampling artists from The Impressions to Stereolab to Cris Williamson. However, in the Slum Village co-founder's arsenal was a heavy vein of Electronic music.... Read more

N.W.A. Were Not the Only Ones to Say Eff The Police. J Dilla Did Too…

The life and career of J Dilla (a/k/a Jay Dee) has become something of a legend. The Detroit, Michigan producer/MC made an indelible impact on music in a 10-year run between Fan-Tas-Tic, Vol. 1 and Donuts. With a thumping sound, a steadfast lyrical bravado, and a penchant for looking beyond... Read more

Slum Village, J Dilla & Bilal Know What Love Is…It’s Hip-Hop (Video)

Slum Village's recently-released YES! album truly is an affirmation. T3 and Young RJ manifest the Villa destiny with nine tracks featuring the late J Dilla's (and group co-founder) handiwork. "Love Is" is one such highlight, including the unmistakable vocals of Bilal, as well as former full-time S.V. member, Illa J.... Read more

15 Years Later, Common’s “The Light” Remains a Shining Example of Hip-Hop Love

On July 18, 2000, Common released "The Light," and with it came one of Hip-Hop's greatest love songs. Along with Black Star's 1998 track "Brown Skin Lady" and The Roots' breakout 1999 single "You Got Me," "The Light" represented a focus on mutual respect, vulnerability, and a soulful approach to... Read more