Producer: A Tribe Called Quest
Album: The Low End Theory
Diamond D: “Skef Anslem [who also worked with A Tribe Called Quest] was an engineer at Jazzy Jay’s studio on Allerton Avenue in the Bronx. That was home base. Jazzy Jay’s the one who put me on. I call Jay the teacher. I would just go up there and be up under him. He had all the breakbeats and original shit, and I was a beat head. So just to watch him put together beats here and there, it made me want to get my money up and get a sampler.
“So I met Tip at first up there. We sat and talked about beats, and just connected. I told him I liked his music, and he said he was feeling my shit. We were both in Zulu Nation too, so it was that whole umbrella.”
“Somehow I wound up at Battery Studios that day. I didn’t come down there to work on the song, I just came through to hear them working on the new album. This was around that time where Grand Puba and Lord Jamar started having their [friction], and I think Puba didn’t show up for the session. Tip said, ‘Yo D, if you got something, you can jump on here.’ And I wrote it right there on the spot, and I kept my verse within the concept that Tip had on the hook.
“Shout out to Stu Fine [from Wild Pitch Records]. I had a little gripe with Stu, but looking back on it, I should have been on top of my paperwork. Now that I’m older and wiser, I see that. But I definitely threw a rock at him [when I said, ‘You don’t want to make a pitch that’s wild’ at the end of my verse].
“It was definitely a good look. I already had my deal [before The Low End Theory came out]. But being on that album helped people know who I was.”