Music is most definitely one of those things that can unite people no matter the language or the country you’re from. It sounds cliche but you have to admit that it is. You can almost always attach any memory (good or bad) to a song or two that was popular at the time of that memory.
A lot of people that follow The305 and more specifically follow me, probably don’t know that I actually started out as a producer. A hip-hop producer to be exact. I had all the latest gadgets, toys and computer programs to help me craft some punchy hip-hop beats that would make Kanye proud. Or atleast I’d hope they would. And while that time of my life has come and gone, I still have great memories of searching through tons of old soul songs and actual vinyl records in hopes of finding that next great sample to use or loop. I would go days in and out just making music, it was a great time of my life when things were simpler.
The music I used to create was most definitely inspired by the New York City “golden era” of hip-hop that was typically like the early 1990s till about 1996 or so. However my “golden era” is extended a little until about the year 2002/2003, with some exceptions of course. But producers like J Dilla, DJ Premier, The RZA, Pete Rock, Just Blaze and even more “commercially successful” producers like Kanye West and some of the early Bad Boy Records “Hitmen” producers created that sound I classify as part of that era. Meaning, very sample heavy with soul samples and gritty drums.
And now that music of all eras is just so accessible, creating playlist and using social media to blast out your tastes in music is as easy as ever. You basically get to share to the world your taste in music and your creativity in forming these collections. And with social media’s explosion, these playlists can take a life of their own with the ability to really tell your story of what these playlists mean to you and the thought process in putting them together.
I created a playlist that gives a little glimpse of all that music that inspired my “producer” days. Most of these songs are 15-20 years old and the songs those songs sampled are over 40-50 years old. Either way, the playlist is simply titled “I Used To Love H.E.R.”, inspired by the Common song of the same name. In it you’ll see a good picking of songs that remind me of that era and inspired the music I used to create.
Each of the songs on the playlist below show the era of sampling in hip-hop at its finest. Borrowing sounds of old to create new songs with life and spirit of the current generation. And while sampling always gets its share of hate from music purists, I think its the ultimate way to pay homage to the musicians and musical eras that came before you. As long as the royalties and the legal steps are taken to properly use those samples, I can’t see why anyone would not atleast respect the practice. Sampling kept the younger generation somewhat in tune to the music and artists of decades past.
Disclosure: Compensation for this post was provided by Spotify via Glam Media. The opinions expressed herein are those of the author and are not indicative of the opinions or positions of Spotify.