EXCLUSIVE: J. Dilla’s Mom Gets Hundreds Of Unreleased Tapes, Artifacts, Manuscripts


(AllHipHop News) Fans around the world will now have the chance to hear new, previously unheard material by J.Dilla, thanks to a record store owner in Detroit, who discovered hundreds lost tapes and other material created by the producer.

Maureen “Ma Dukes” Yancey is now in possession of hundreds of tapes created and produced by her son J. Dilla, who died of February 10, 2006 from Lupus.

The treasure trove of J.Dilla material was found by Jeff Bubeck, who owns the Royal Oak-based record store UHF.

Bubeck was cleaning out an abandoned storage unit storage he took control of, when he found over 7,000-8,000 records, notebooks, notes and other handwritten artifacts by J.Dilla.

In an exclusive Q&A with AllHipHop.com, Ms. Yancey revealed that Bubeck declined offers from around the world to sell J.Dilla’s material and returned a box of original beat tapes, letters and other items.

“It was overwhelming to see this handwriting again and to see how he marked his records, with his silver marker,” Ms. Yancey told AllHipHop.com. “That was his favorite color, the silver marker.

According to Ms. Yancey, J. Dilla, born James Dewitt Yancey, left to record in California, but before he left, he wanted to sell over 20,000 albums from his collection.

Jonathan Taylor, who is the business manager for The J.Dilla Foundation, said that the producer’s collection simply became scattered after his death.

“He chose which ones [records] he wanted,” Taylor told AllHipHop.com. “He took the ones he wanted and those that were left, were from eight years ago.”

Ms. Yancey and Jonathan Taylor wanted to express their gratitude to Jeff Bubeck for returning the material and not thinking about a turning a profit off of the valuable material that he discovered.

“He is my hero. He truly is,” Ms. Yancey told AllHipHop.com of Bubeck. “It was really good to be with him and to see him and to see the type of person he was. He just broke down, because he’s a remarkable father and understood.”

Check back tomorrow for a full Q&A with Ms. Yancey and Jonathan Taylor of the J.Dilla Foundation.