James Dewitt Yancey (February 7, 1974 – February 10, 2006), also known as J Dilla or Jay Dee, was an American record producer who emerged from the mid-1990s underground hip hop scene in Detroit, Michigan. Many critics believe J Dilla's work to have had a major influence on American hip hop music.
Yancey's career began slowly; he was highly regarded among the groups and rappers for which he produced, mostly notably including production for critically acclaimed albums by Common, Busta Rhymes, A Tribe Called Quest, and The Pharcyde. He was a member of Slum Village for their acclaimed debut album Fantastic, Vol. 2.
In the early 2000s, Yancey's career as a solo artist began to improve; A solo album Welcome 2 Detroit was followed by a collaborative album with California producer Madlib, Champion Sound, which catalyzed the careers of both artists. Just as his music was becoming increasingly popular, Yancey died in 2006 of the blood disease TTP. -via Wikipedia 5/4/09
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