By Carter Maness
From innovators like The Bomb Squad and DJ Premier to modern Internet miners, hip-hop producers have long turned sampling old records into an art, yet J Dilla, real name James Yancey, was perhaps the biggest master of all. And now, The Detroit News is reporting that a store called UHF in Royal Oak, MI is selling a collection of 7,000-8,000 records believed to be part of Dilla's storied record collection.
According to the article, the collection contains an assorted series of records, including "mountains of 94-cent Earth, Wind & Fire LPs," as well as junk mail addressed to Yancey, lyric books and a set of "Jaydee Beats"-labeled cassettes.
UHF owner Jeff Bubeck, who got the collection from an abandoned storage unit in Clinton Township, was shocked to score so big after years of collecting. "It was pretty shocking," he told the paper. "I was like, 'Are you kidding me?'"
Bubeck also claims that he has attempted to contact the J Dilla Foundation and the producer's mother, Maureen Yacey, in an attempt to share the proceeds. The Foundation has yet to respond.
He plans to sell the collection in batches, giving many fans a chance to own a record that Dilla once owned. UHF released the initial set of albums to attract visitors during Record Store Day last weekend on April 21.