It might have just been the best show to date for hip hop purists as the Observatory in OC along with Out Da house productions brought forth a show dedicated to one of hip hop's most influential producers/emcee: WELCOME TO DILLAVILLE.
The man who left behind a legacy of 40+ discographies (including solo and group releases) and a countless production catalog ranging from 1995 to present date- James DeWitt Yancey better known to you as J Dilla- received the utmost deserving respect with a honorary tribute show headlining associating acts Slum Village and Bizarre Ride II live (the Pharcyde).
DJ Daine held down the 1' and 2's throughout the night spinning hip hop classics. Supporiting talent: Dukes Of Hip Hop, Zeek and DJ Realizm, The Ghetto Zoo, Speach Impediments with special guest Abstract Rude, Dusty Crates and Serge Severe, prepped the crowd for an unforgettable night.
Slum Village's Deejay TJ The King turned the building out with a short Dilla tribute following our local talents. The crowd lit up with the sound of Jay Dee productions.
T3 along with Young RJ took to the stage as Slum Village shortly after, and fans went up into an enthusiastic uproar. The duo had the entire building vibing to favorites such as "I Don't Know", "Fall in Love", "Climax", "Closer", "Tainted", and my personal favorites "The Look Of Love" and the Kanye Produced "Selfish". They even did Dilla's 2006 single "Won't Do" which had fans reciting word for word- One won't do it, two is not enough for me, no. T3 and Young RJ filled the atmosphere with a easy and feel good vibe reciting all those classic tracks revolving around the concept of love for a good 35 minute set.
Original Pharcyde members FatLip & SlimKid3 along with substituting acts J-Swift, L.A. Jay and K-Natural took the stage to perform the classic groups 1992 album Bizarre Ride II front-to-back. You could only imagine how that went down.
Right off the get-go they hit us with "Oh Shit" jumping up and down, running every inch of that stage and starting up their set with a tremendous pump. The entire performance of this classic album was impeccable despite the absence of original members, due to the groups on-going differences, it felt as though everything was intact.
The highlight of course was the performance of "Passing Me By" and "Runnin" which is not on the album but couldn't go unperformed- after all it was a show in honor of the late great Jay Dee. Let me tell y'all, when that track came on it's like we went back to '95, the energy on that stage was up the roof. The most was being done- from the running man to signature up and down hand motion of approval in the air.
We were taken on a bizarre ride for a good 45-50 minutes including an ending in which Slum Vill joined FatLip and SlimKid3 on stage as the deejay kept it going with Dilla tracks. At this point the show was over, yet everyone on that stage was determined to end it all in a proper hip hop filled way- inviting people on stage to freestyle over the legends instrumentals.
This night was hip hop all around. To me, It was one of the most unforgettable nights of the year, as I'm sure it also was to those hip hop fanatics that were present that night.
And I'm going to keep it 100... this show wasn't what it should have been in regard to the number in audience present. The show was held in the main room and it was half (or maybe a little under half full). It could have been the date, after all it was a Tuesday night, or could it be that people aren't appreciative of the classics and good ole‘ hip hop music anymore. Well I know the second one isn't true, knowing how many of you people out there boast to be about that “real” hip hop.
Whatever it may have been, if you weren't either at the LA or the Santa Ana show and you claim to be a hip hop head, I simply can't respect that. I don't care if you had to be at work or school the next morning, sick with the flu, got ran over by a bus (Okay maybe I took it too far there), your ass should've been there (especially for the price this show was brought to you for)! Y'all get my point.
If you weren’t there, you missed out! But I’ma let the following clips and photographs do the rest of the talking.
Big thank you to those who came out, performed and supported. Also big ups to the Observatory OC for the continuous support in bringing an eclectic hip hop scene for all.
Last but not least RIP J Dilla.
(Photo Cred: Rodrigo Guillermo)