Give thanks on what would have been James Yancey’s 41st birthday.

James Yancey, best known as Jay Dee and J Dilla, passed away on February 10, 2006, three days after his 32nd birthday. In the following years, J Rocc, the Los Angeles DJ and Beat Junkie, paid tribute to his friend and musical inspiration with a series of mixes titled Thank You Jay Dee.

Originally released via the Stones Throw podcast feed, the four mixes are among the finest tributes to the legacy of Dilla’s music and just how far reaching and pioneering it was.

Considering today marks what would have been Yancey’s 41st birthday, and with many of the Dilla month celebratory parties taking place around the world in the next few days, there is no better time to enjoy these mixes once more. Or discover them for the first time.

J Rocc digs deep into Dilla’s archives, including tons of unreleased beats and rarities. Head over to Rappcats for the download links. Acts 3 and 4 are joined together, and meant to play as a continuous mix. Covers for the last two are by Stones Throw’s own Jeff Jank.

Thank you Jay Dee.

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