Overdue Homey Feature: DJ House Shoes

I have been focusing on myself lately, trying to get ready for the “new me” in the new year of two thousand nine. In the last week or so, I have been getting some AWESOME music from respected DJ friends of mine. I figure this week I should give them their propers (read: proper respects) and do some features on them, because these guys are not just excellent tastemakers and music selectors but they are beatdiggin’ behemoths too. You’ll come to understand as the posts drop.

Now these features are not being done in any hierarchical order. I am doing them based on when I got the music, so with that said… let’s get to it!

First, I want to highlight a new mix in store for the masses called The King James Version.

It is a mix of original tracks used by James “Jay Dee –> J Dilla” Yancey to make his beats. The mix was created by none other than Detroit’s worldwide hip hop ambassador – DJ House Shoes.

If you do not know about Shoes yet, then see this as a quick introduction to him. House Shoes has a lot of claims to his fame. He was responsible for releasing the highly sought-after Jay Dee Unreleased EP and the classic “Dedication to the Suckers” 12″ by Phat Kat – both on House Shoes Records. Back when being a DJ really meant something, House Shoes had the distinction of breaking many of the notable Detroit hip hop artists you may know today. He produced tracks for a young eLZhi and a drunken Irishmen named Paradime. Honestly, if Shoes had equity in the house he built for Detroit hip hop, he would be able to buy the Renaissance Center off of General Motors right now. Alas, my friend has to grind just like the rest of us; good thing he’s a talented bloke!

The King James Version… man, I just finished listening to it and I stay amazed by the diversity in Dilla’s sample selection. He IS the vanguard when it comes to finding the perfect sound to evoke an emotion in hip hop production. There is no doubt about it. And like my man House Shoes probably would proffer if you would want to disagree, you can get punched in the face for being an idiot. I do not really condone violence though. I just want you to understand how serious Dilla’s work really was.

In the capacity that I have the mix, I know that the mix was recorded at Rhettmatic of World Famous Beat Junkies’ place. All the songs are recorded from vinyl – no MP3 stuff – so before you jump and try to compile your own mix, forget about it. You just cannot possibly have the collection. House Shoes is showing off in a major way. That is not to say all the records are rare or you cannot get them, but you first must find the samples first. Then the time and money it would take to procure many of these pieces would take YEARS. For Shoes, about half of these were his own finds. A huge grip came from the GOAT himself and the rest of the spotted samples were from others, but House Shoes owns all the records.

In the mix, you will find my personal contribution to Dilla’s sample discography, Neil Innes & Son “Cum on Feel the Noize,” from Morgan Fisher’s Miniatures which I hipped Shoes to a couple years back after Dilla died. Also you will hear tracks by Gap Mangione and a slew of others like The Cyrkle that you could do your life some good knowing about:

I am going to end this with a track produced by House Shoes with the most recent eMCee from Detroit that he co-signed for – Danny Brown.

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