Support Ukraine through donations here

Shopping Cart

Your cart is empty

Continue Shopping

Dan Charnas

Dilla Time : The Life and Afterlife of J Dilla, the Hip-Hop Producer Who Reinvented Rhythm

It's Dilla Time. Finally. Dilla Time is the story of the invention of a new kind of time, a new kind of sound, by the most influential music producer of the last twenty-five years, someone you may never have heard of: J.

Dilla. He's revered by rappers and producers from Kanye West to Kendrick Lamar, and he worked with the likes of Michael Jackson and Janet Jackson-but Dilla himself never rose to mainstream fame, despite revolutionizing the way music sounds before his untimely death at the age of thirty-two. In Dilla Time, Dan Charnas chronicles the life of J.

Dilla, from his gifted childhood in Detroit, to the rare medical condition that caused his tragically premature death. He also records the histories of American rhythms: from the birth of funk and soul in Dilla's own Motown, to techno and disco. Here, music is a story of Black culture in America and of what happens when human and machine times are synthesized into something totally new.

Charnas teaches us to "see" sound differently, giving time itself texture, color, pattern. Dilla's beats, which to the untrained ear sound imprecise and chaotic, were born of the rigorous work ethic of a perfectionist almost spiritually devoted to his music. This is the story of the man, and the machines, that made up a new kind of time.

Equal parts musicology, biography, and cultural history, Dilla Time is a book as delightfully detail-oriented and as vibrantly original as J. Dilla's music. Includes Black-and-White Illustrations

Format: Hardcover
Published: USA, 2022
Publisher: McD
Pages: 458
Language: English
ISBN 13: 9780374139940
ISBN 10: 0374139946

Shipping & Delivery

Please allow us 24-48 hours to prepare your order. Once your order is ready to be dispatched, we will send it via Deutsche Post DHL which quotes the following delivery times:

Within Germany: 2-4 working days
Within Europe: 3-6 working days

Due to the coronavirus pandemic, delivery times can vary, we aim to keep you updated if delivery time is longer than expected.

We currently only ship to countries in Europe and the United Kingdom. If you have a request for shipping to another area of the world, please contact us at

Refunds & Returns

At Shakespeare & Sons you can shop with confidence. We are happy to provide a refund or voucher of equal value where the goods are returned within 21 days of purchase unused, in original condition, accompanied by proof of purchase.

To return an online order within the refund policy period, please contact us and we will then give you instructions on how best to return your order so we can process your refund.

To return an in store purchase, please bring the purchased item and proof of receipt into the store, within 21 days of purchase.

Please note we do not offer discretionary exchange or refunds on Gift Vouchers, Sale Items, or damaged products. 

Gift Wrap & Cards

Shakespeare & Sons offer gift wrapping and greeting cards. To have your items gift wrapped, head to our Gift Wrap collection, choose the paper you prefer and add it to your cart. We will wrap the items for you and send them to the address you have submitted or have it ready in store for you to collect (depending on what option you select at check out).

Check out our Greeting Card collection here. If you would like us to include a message in your selected card, forward your purchase confirmation onto with some words and we will add these in for you. 

We're here to help

Can't find what you're looking for?

If the book you're after is not displayed on our website or is 'sold out' please feel free to contact us at or come into the store and we can let you know the cost of ordering it and expected arrival time.

Dilla Time : The Life and Afterlife of J Dilla, the Hip-Hop Producer Who Reinvented Rhythm