Common pulled up to Hot 97 on Wednesday (Jan. 24) and recalled a time in the early 2000s when he and Dilla lived together, and Kanye came through to their crib one Mother’s Day, and the Detroit native gave West some of his signature drums.
“Kanye would sample some of Dilla’s drums off his beat tapes,” Common began. “Anyway, Ye came over and it was Mother’s Day. We were going to Mother’s Day brunch with his mother and my mother. Dilla was at the crib and Ye came in and Dilla was talking to him and they was just bonding.”
“Then Dilla gave Ye these drums on a record. He’s like, ‘Take these drums.’ I promise you Ye was like, it was like the golden chalice. We went to the studio later that day and Ye was telling G and all them, ‘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 drums.”
Hot 97 co-host Peter Rosenberg briefly interjected to make sure he heard the “Faithful” rapper right when it came to Kanye and the Slum Village member hanging out together in Los Angeles.
“It was in our front room,” Common confirmed. “It was love. Dilla had a lot of love for Ye, and Ye had love for Dilla. It was great to see somebody who is great as Ye just be like, ‘D–n, Dilla gave me these drums.’ The reference and love.”
J Dilla — born James Yancey — passed away in February 2006 due to a combination of TTP and lupus.
Kanye has previously reflected on meeting J Dilla in an unearthed 2013 interview from part of the Stones Throw documentary Our Vinyl Weighs a Ton and compared him to Quincy Jones.
“I met J Dilla at Common’s crib just down the street here in L.A.,” West said. “They were staying together, and I just remember looking at that MPC. And those drums came out of that MPC, arguably the best drums in hip-hop history. I just remember vibing with him and having so much respect, and just wanting to work with him more.”
“He had the organic feel, but still, the sonics were breakthrough, and he could give you a warm sound that still cut through speakers. It’s like he was making Quincy Jones production sessions inside his MPC.”
Watch Common recall the Ye-Dilla meetup at the 19:30 mark below:
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