For "Jamaica," a standout track from Ace Hood's Starvation 3 mixtape, Beat Bully copped a sample of dialogue from the 1998 film "Belly." In a thick Jamaican patois, the character Ox (played by reggae star Louie Rankin) fearlessly declares himself "the original Jamaican don dada" while being hunted down by a team of assassins. For Ace Hood's purposes, this boast is a great intro to this ferocious track, in which he describes life "on the gully side" where "all they know is homicide."
Check out a clip from "Belly" below. The sample used in "Jamaica" appears around the 1:50 mark.
Common's No I.D.-produced "War" is an outcry against the youth violence in his hometown of Chicago. For this dramatic track, No I.D. borrowed from the "Godfather III" soundtrack, specifically an orchestral march called "Marcia Religiosa." Performed by The City Of Prague Philharmonic Orchestra, this foreboding song was composed by Nino Rota and Carmine Coppola, father of "Godfather" director Francis Ford Coppola. Its use on "War" makes Common's conscious lyrics about "Chiraq" seem more ominous, real and significant.
Nipsey Hussle's "Hotel Suite" is a retro-sounding ode to life on tour. That old-school sound comes courtesy of a Freddie Jackson sample, chopped up and modernized by co-producers Ralo Stylez and V12 Tha Hitman. From the 1986 song "Have You Ever Loved Somebody," the track features some early 808 drums similar to those on Marvin Gaye's "Sexual Healing," and some almost-cheesy '80s keyboards. Nipsey's smooth flow perfectly compliments the instrumental, expertly splitting the difference between classic and modern.
In this new feature, we break down some of the week's hottest tracks by their samples.
When hip-hop began, samples were all that DJs and producers had to construct instrumental tracks with. They'd dig through crates of vinyl trying to find isolated drum breaks, melodies or vocals that they could repurpose for use in hip-hop music. Today, sampling has become less common, but a choice sample can still push a track from lukewarm to hot faster than you can say "uh huh honey."
Check back every Thursday for more record breaks from your favorite artists.