Happy Birthday Dilla, my tribute to you.
boom baptist - toucan wing (j dilla tribute)
this is pretty special right here; while it’s not exactly a remix, it still captures dilla’s spirit, in the sense that it combines his style of beats with the style that’s found prominence in the years following his death. there are beatmakers out there that are products of his imagination, and don’t even realize the extent that their own styles are a tribute to his music. the modern instrumental hip-hop/dubstep-infused/soul and jazz-driven experimental bass movement would be TOTALLY DIFFERENT, if not potentially nonexistent, without dilla’s legacy serving as a foundation for it, as well as being a direct source of inspiration for that first wave of successors, like flying lotus, jniero jarel, and even madlib. you know someone’s a big deal when they’re fundamentally linked to the rise of an posthumous art form that bears some of their signature touch.
this track is chunky in a way that reminds me of b.lewis or even samiyam, with a distinct strut and glossy shimmer to it thanks to the oscillating keys, lazy vocal harmonies, and those familiarly un-quantized drums. if anything, it’s a remix of ‘one can win,’ and there are some snippets of busta rhymes, a ‘rest in peace,’ and some detroit ad libs thrown into the mix to signify other aspects of his career. it closes out with a victorious california funk melody on synth, once it’s evident that this tribute is a track that stands on its own and has transcended the jazzy smoothness of dilla’s loops. boom baptist (andrew thaggard) is one of austin’s finest beatsmiths, and a regular at the city’s many electronic music showcases, including the upcoming gaslamp killer show on thursday. the post-dilla beatmaking scene thrives here in central texas, with boom baptist, the applied pressure crew, and innumerable others all providing their own versions of head-nodding loops and soulful chops, topping them with glitch, wobble, and whatever else keeps listeners engaged.