Just over a month before the “Queen of Hip Hop Soul” Mary J Blige releases her ninth studio album, Growing Pains, the Brooklyn-based deejay J.Period reveals that her long-awaited “Best of” mixtape may become an official release.
“Everybody knows the epic of this Mary J Blige mixtape,” J.Period told HipHopDX from Los Angeles. “It’s a three CD monster. It’s meant to outdo the [“Best of Lauryn Hill“] mixtape. For that, I got Mary into the studio, recorded exclusive songs, sat down and interviewed her, put all her different styles together. When I presented it to the label, they were like, ‘This shouldn’t be a mixtape, this should be an album.’ It was very exciting.“
After reportedly meeting with Blige’s label, Geffen Records, on Monday, the True Elements deejay also understands the bigger picture. “The reality is, them saying that is one-tenth of the process. The hard part is the logistics of clearing all those samples and figuring out creative ways to make it work,” he said, admitting that samples are an essential component of his mixtapes, which he’s done with Nas, The Roots, Big Daddy Kane and the aforementioned Lauryn Hill.
Even outside of the classic structure of releasing material, J.Period says there are ready alternatives. “I have relationships with folks like iTunes who are interested in putting out a legitimate J.Period mixtape, and who really get it. But they don’t have the power to clear the samples.”
After the crack-down from the RIAA of DJ Drama at the top of this year, J.Period says this was his combatant to limited resources for deejays. He told DX, “While a lot of other deejays went to the press and complained what was going on, they made their mixtapes for free, I was like, ‘Let’s really change the game.‘”
As the fate of Mary J Blige’s official mixtape is determined, J.Period is presently working on another mixtape with Alicia Keys, along with the recently-released “Searching For Rick Rubin” mixtape released with Brooklyn band Game Rebellion.