How Dilla's Records Were Reunited With Ma Dukes
The Snap Judgement Radio Show at NPR teams with Jeff Bubeck and Maureen “Ma Dukes” Yancey to present J Dilla’s Lost Scrolls/The Reunion – an oral history of how
J Dilla‘s record collection aka The Lost Scrolls and other personal affects were returned to his mother after being found in an abandoned storage locker in Detroit. Producer Pat Mesiti-Miller talks with Bubeck – owner of Detroit’s UHF Records – about the once-in-a-lifetime find that left him open to criticism from fans and vultures eager to get their hands on even a smidgen of something that might have belonged to the uber-prolific Motor City producer – a man continually celebrated and considered by many to be the greatest beat maker of all time. The interview finds Bubeck in the midst of a firestorm of claims to the property and inquiries that prompted him to turn his phone off and seek an audience with Dilla’s mother, Ma Dukes. Understanding he was undoubtedly sitting on a treasure trove of material, Bubeck felt that Dilla’s mother and other heirs should have sole possession of the collection; his decision was solidified after reading reports that Dilla’s family had not received any monies related to his recordings and remained in debt even as late as six years after his death. While Dilla’s fans generally consider his work priceless, the invaluable pieces of this collection have absolutely proven to be the most intangible. The personal weight of the tapes and other items returned to Ma Dukes is immediately palpable in the joy and sudden pain that rises in her voice as they listen to one of his lost tracks. Check the interview below. Purchase J Dilla’s The Lost Scrolls Vol. 1 via iTunes.