A week or two ago I posted a super rare Jay Dee production from 1993 that is not in any official discography I've ever seen, and throughout the years I probably researched Dilla about as extensively as Jordan Fergusson for his book on "Donuts" . That cut was a banging Detroit soul joint produced by James Yancey and Adé and only released as a white label 12", and titled "T.H.I.Q.U.E.". Now that was news to me and I'm sure a lot of other heads; what I got for you is just slightly less obscure and although I've known about it for quite some time I have never posted it on here.
The Katz was an all-female group from Detroit that released their one and only EP around the same time that 5-Ela and Slum Village was starting to make moves in the city. I used to have a good article on this but unfortunately I can't find it anymore, but it was from a local Detroit newspaper, about one and a half page talking about the growing hip-hop movement in the D and how important produer Jay Dee was in all this as he produced for all of these groups respective demos/debuts. If I come across it again, I will update this post to include it as well. While I don't remember too much of the specifcs of the article, it mentioned that The Katz was an all-female MC group who had just released (this was in 1996) their EP called "Come Fly With Me" on small indie label Fertile Records. I of course looked it up and tried my best to get my hands on a copy (which most likely would be a digital copy since it seems very obscure). It turns out that off the eight tracks featured on the cassette Jay Dee produced three, while fellow "D" representative DJ Dez produced the majority of the others. I have made no luck in tracking down this EP in full, however, thanks to YouTube users ugrap001 and WGFproductions we can actually listen to two more full early Jay Dee productions (out of three from this EP). To read more on this release and confirm the credits for yourself (even if these credits are bogus, remember I read an article from local Detroit press stating that Yancey indeed produced for this group on this release), check out The Discogs Page.
The sounds on these two tracks, "Happy Dayz" and "Funny", are vintage mid-'90s JD, heavy on the bottom, the unmistakable drum programming and the filtered keyboard samples. The emcees might not be the strongest, but this is obviously a must hear for Dilla fans and a lot more interesting than much of the stuff reelased posthumously. Since they are both ripped from old cassettes the quality ain't all that, whicfh made me take the liberty to compress them from YouTube to Mp3 since I'm guessing most of y'all want to have these in your digital collection. If you rather check the YT (click here and here) (also photo up top borrowed from the great HipHopisRead). A LITTLE LOUDER!!