DJ Yasushi (Sushi)

“I can’t believe I just signed an original pressing of 3 Feet High and Rising… History” – Vincent Lamont Mason Jr., AKA Maseo, P.A. Pasemaster Mase, and Plug Three, of the one and only, you guessed it, De La Soul

“White Label Test Pressing bought for $2.99 from a random bookstore in Pennsylvania decades ago”, according to whom the signature is addressed, DJ Yasushi of Groovenut Records in Ame-Mura (American Village) in Ōsaka. Good grief! Test Press of one of the most important and influential albums in Hip Hop history, personally signed no less. Talk about treasure…

…For the Golden Week Holiday in Japan, my family packed our bags, hopped on a Shinkansen Bullet Train, and headed out of Tokyo down the archipelago, with our first of many more stops being Tenka no Daidokoro (the nation’s kitchen), AKA Ōsaka, where we’d end up gorging ourselves on so many Takoyaki (octopus balls) that I needn’t have another until next Gold Week. Being Japan’s outgoing extrovert, Ōsaka is a well-established contributor to the nation’s entertainment industry with many of the top comedians, actors, and musicians hailing from the region, known for producing undeniably less shy characters than more reserved Tokyo. My daughter’s current infatuation with one such musician, and her quest to find some related goods unique to Ōsaka preoccupied her for an hour in Dotonburi’s Tustaya, during which time I dashed off to the concentrated cluster of record shops adjacent the area, first and closest stop being Goovenut.

Super cool and shop, stocked with all genres of music, with lots of soul, jazz, and hiphop. With a quick introduction, shopkeep DJ Yasushi told me to just call him Sushi, which gave me a chuckle. Smiles and stories were shared, and I got the abbreviated autobiography of how Yasushi got from Punk to HipHop, from clubbing and DJing, and how Groovenut got started. Somehow we got to talking about meeting some of our heroes and them signing some of our favorite albums, when he busted some signed gems, and this priceless copy of 3 Feet High and Rising and the story of getting it signed. What a tale to tell!

Bottom line, Groovnut is groovy. Yasush’s a Dude. I’ll be back, fo sho. Peace Out!

Showbiz & A.G. – Runaway Slave
Label: Payday – 828 334-1, London Records – 828 334-1
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album
Country: US
Released: 1992
Genre: Hip Hop
Style: Boom Bap

Schmugs – Quit Talkin’
Label: Truncate Records – TR001
Format: Vinyl, LP, Stereo
Country: Denmark
Released: Oct 11, 2015
Genre: Hip Hop

M.C. Class – Hope You’re Listening
Label: Not On Label – none
Format: Vinyl, 12″, 33 ⅓ RPM, Stereo
Country: US
Released: 1993
Genre: Hip Hop
Style: Jazzy Hip-Hop

茂千代 – 新御堂筋夜想曲(2LP)
Label: S.T.A.
Format: Vinyl, LP, Stereo
Country: Japan
Released: 2019
Genre: Hip Hop

De La Soul – 3 Feet High And Rising
Label: Big Life – Tommy Boy – DLSLP 1
Format: Vinyl, LP, Album, Damont Pressing (Test Pressing)
Country: UK
Released: 1989
Genre: Hip Hop
Style: Conscious

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