J Dilla’s “Don’t Cry,” Deconstructed

April 30, 2014 | Andy Cush

“Don’t Cry” is a soulful, melancholy highlight that arrives on the third side of Donuts, the instrumental swan-song from the late hip hop producer J Dilla. To celebrate the music, the blogger Darius Kazemi broke down that beat into its constituent samples — from the Escorts’ “I Can’t Stand to See You Cry” — wrote about how they fit together, and made an interactive tool that lets you play them all yourself. It’s fun, and it’s a nice window into what might have been Dilla’s process.

Kazemi writes:

For this particular loop, Dilla took miniscule bits of sound from a three-minute-long song, usually grabbing little kick and snare hits at the end of vocal phrases where the instruments were isolated in the mix, but also sometimes picking hits where there was a remnant of vocals. He was also more meticulous than I would have guessed.