> The extraordinary Richard Goodman writes:
> > Well, the rip off jobs continue: I saw a new Notorious B.I.G. song start
> > to play and I was going to see how long it took for me to consciously
> > recognize a sample. As soon as the song started. Right away. This was
> > a direct swipe of the Diana Ross song 'I'm Coming Up'- the background
> > beats, the chorus, the style. I'm not sure if that offended me more or
> > the fact that the two people watching with me didn't know that. They
> > then procede to say "But it's a good song anyways." That is circular
> > reasoning- if they steal a good song and don't change it, that doesn't
> > mean they have then created a good song.
[all sorts of clever thoughts snipped out]
> Sampling works. The good rappers are not hacks; they take catchy riffs
> and craft a new song around that familiar yet fashionable theme. I, for
> one, happen to like the new Notorious B.I.G. single, and I'm not the
> only one: it's been #2 on the Billboard Hot 100 for the past 7 weeks,
> second only to the tribute song the Puff Daddy and Faith Evans penned to
> the riff on the Police's "Every Breath You Take", which has been #1 on
> the Billboard Hot 100 for the past 10 weeks.
Well the problem with sampling is (and understand I bought a 944 when they
came out from programming CMS Fairlights) is music is a particularly
emotional experience. Let's make up a couple of quick examples.
I take my soulmate to the movies. We have a perfect evening. It is an art
theatre since she is a pretty arty girl. We see a Hitchcock movie.
Things don't work out. I take a date whom I can't hardly stand to a Brian
De Palma movie (Body Double) do I sit and cry at all the Hitchcock
references in *that* movie?
I'm making love with my soul mate. She likes Dianna Ross. We are listening
to Dianna sing and we are in love.
Things don't work out. I'm sitting at Starbucks and the Notorious P.I.G.
comes on. I hear that riff and start to cry.
So the problem is not that it is not valid, since in one way or another
every artist samples, it's that it's taking a snapshot of something else.
It's lifting something part and parcel and placing it somewhere else. It
isn't the Beatles ripping off Little Richard going whoooooo. It's the
Beatles including Little Richard in one of their songs.
One day someone is going to start sampling the rap artists of today. Let's
hear what they say when their riffs are being paid in someone else's
royality check. Personally I prefer the approach the British take to
sampling. The drum beat in The Chemical Brothers song is lifted right from
a Beatles song, but it is used and enhanced in a clever way that American
rap artists don't quite get.
... at least you can drive something fast, arm your-
self with powerful tools, and look good doing it.
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