Gangsta Mittens
Words combined to express thoughts. Pictures displayed to convey emotion. Opening my brain to the world.

Dilla Day 2/21/08

I think that I could end the blog with that picture, but I want to at least try to put into words what yesterday meant to me.

For as long as I can remember I have loved music. My earliest music memories are of me and my nephew. We would listen to the radio and sing along… and when we got tired of that, we’d make our own tapes of us playing radio. We’d announce and sing the songs… most of those tapes ended with someone snatching the microphone, a little bit of arguing… perhaps a scuffle, the stop button would be pushed, and we’d run off to do something else. From there I guess I got hooked on videos and more radio. My parents had records but I wasn’t really allowed to play with them. I had my own stack of records but I had to have someone else put them on for me.

I remember when I got old enough to work the stereo on my own. How excited I would get everytime i would place a record on the turntable and marvel at the sounds that would come thru the speakers. As I got older I realized the effect that music had on my emotions… Over the years I fell in and out of love with many different artists and genres but my love for music remained constant.

That brings me to last night… kinda… in 2005, I took a trip to san fran… and dom insisted on playing this song over and over again. That’s Dom’s thing… He’ll hammer a song into your head… The song was “The $$” by Dilla… a song that wouldn’t be officially released until like 2 yrs later I think. Either way I was hooked and i quickly realized, like a bunch of others, that Dilla had produced like 200 other songs that I loved… ok *that* brings us to last night.

February 21, 2008, was “Dilla Day” at XM. It started out with a panel that consisted of Pete Rock, Talib Kweli, and Ms. Yancey (Dilla’s mother). The three spoke on their experiences with him and how his music changed their lives. It was extremely interesting to hear his mother talk about him and to hear Pete speak and to just be so in awe of Dilla’s talent. After the panel, a group of extremely talented artists took the stage and paid tribute by playing song after song from JD’s extensive catalog.

The night was a huge success. There were plenty of times that I was almost moved to tears (yes, i know this is nothing new) but it reminded me again why i love music so much. I tried to explain it to a friend… It’s like ppl get so caught up in chasing samples and trying to figure out what record a producer used on a record, that it seems like they lose sight of the fact that at some point someone actually played the song. Hearing a live band playing these songs brought the music back to life. It reminded me why i love music and what it means to me.

Music is truly my first love. I’m glad that I have people in my life that i can share that love with and that understand it’s importance in my life… but enough about all that… here are some more pics. Enjoy.


Kev Brown

Flex Matthews

Cy Young

J Hill

See more here:

Dilla Day at XM 2/21/08

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