Written by Luke Alex Davis 11:18 am Sampling

Dilla Data Is A Dilla Treasure Trove

4 NYU students created a site called Dilla Data that collected information on J Dilla’s samples. Check it out.

J Dilla

We all know Dilla’s discography is immense and there’s still plenty more in his “vault”. But for the stuff that is out there, a group of students—named Kay, Jack, Jordan, and Owen—decided to put it into a data blog called Dilla Data.

During the Spring semester of 2017, NYU did a course on Dilla and the students behind Dilla Data made the website as part of their project. They decided to showcase Dilla’s sample choices and reached out to WhoSampled for raw data which they tabulated.

Kay contacted WhoSampled who offered a file with all the data we needed and worked on coding and setting up the website. Jack and Jordan parsed through the file WhoSampled sent us and helped to develop graphics. Owen acted as director of the project and worked out concepts. We all contributed to the production of the website: collecting images, writing and designing pages.

Dilla’s tracks are split into 5 eras:

  • Boom Bap Era (1995)
  • The Ummah (1996–1998)
  • Soulquarian Era (1999–2001)
  • Dilla Bot Era (2002–2003)
  • Donuts Era (2004–2006)
  • Posthumous Releases

If you don’t fancy trawling through WhoSampled for Dilla samples, you should consider Dilla Data. There’s still a debate about revealing samples and “sample snitching” and while that won’t go away, this is a fantastic trove of information on an iconic producer.