2024-02-27T18:35:44+00:00February 27th, 2024|

J Dilla‘s classic album Donuts was inspired by Kanye West, according to Slum Village member Slum Village, according to Young RJ.

In an interview with Shirley Ju, the Detroit native shared a story from the video shoot for the group’s 2004 song “Selfish” which was produced by and featured a young Kanye alongside John Legend.

RJ remembered Dilla — who had left Slum Village a few years earlier but continued to occasionally produce for the group — coming down to the video shoot, where he was taunted by an associate over Ye’s soulful beats.

“He shows up to the video and we sitting back there. A guy named Scrap Dirty like, ‘Man, this your group and you gon’ let Kanye come through and do this? He killing the soul shit!’

“Dilla’s sitting in the stands like, ‘Oh word? That’s what you think?’ He goes back… that’s when you get all the stuff that you heard on Donuts, all the soul stuff. He was making his point that, ‘I’m unfuckwittable.’”

Watch his comments at the 3:57 mark below.

In the same interview, Young RJ and fellow Slum Village MC T3 revealed that Kanye West charged the group $90,000 for his work on “Selfish” as “payback” against a record label executive who passed over him when he was trying to land a deal.

“We walk in the studio and he’s like, ‘This is the joint.’ Ain’t no options. This the beat for y’all. We’re like, ‘Okay, we can work with this,’” RJ recalled.

After T3 revealed Ye’s price tag, RJ said: “The only reason he charged that is because of a certain A&R that turned him down when he was looking for a record deal. He was getting payback.”

When Shirley Ju expressed shock at the fee, T3 pointed out that Slum Village were given a $1 million budget for their album Detroit Deli (A Taste of Detroit) from Capitol Records.

Kanye West and J Dilla had a tight relationship before the legendary producer passed away in 2006.

Common recently reminisced about the two artists “bonding” at his house during an interview with Hot 97’s Ebro in the Morning.

“I remember Kanye coming over to the crib where Dilla and I stayed,” the Chicago rap veteran said, referencing the Los Angeles home he shared with Jay Dee in the 2000s. “Kanye would sample Dilla’s drums off his beat tapes.

“Ye came over, it was Mother’s Day. We were going to a Mother’s Day brunch with Ye and his mother and my mother and then Dilla was at the crib. Ye was talking to him and they was just bonding, and then Dilla gave Ye these drums on a record.”

Common then remembered Kanye’s jubilant reaction to Dilla’s gift: “I promise you, Ye was like, it was the golden chalice. We went to the studio later that day and Ye was telling Gee [Roberson], ‘Yo, Dilla gave me these drums!’ I forgot what song it ended up being but as soon as we got there, he was working on those songs.”

He added: “Dilla had a lot of love for Ye. And Ye had love for Dilla. It was great to see somebody who was as great as Ye just be like, ‘Dilla gave me these joints!’”

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