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vol 64: samples on samples on samples
i’ve been in my 70s and 80s music bag lately
I’ve been in my 70s and 80s music bag lately. Everything popping up on my daily discovery playlist on Tidal has been what our parents probably called Funk.
So today, for lunch, I’m sharing some of my favorite tracks from the 70s & 80s that were sampled in the 90s and early 00s (and beyond) to create some of the most epic tracks of all time.
note: if you really want to get into today’s lunch, pop your headphones in and go on the musical journey with me. open up your music streaming platform and start searching the samples (bullets) while listening to the originals - titles aka hyperlinks. open the hyperlinks. have fun!
Walk On By (1969) - Issac Hayes
This song has been covered so many times, but initially, this song was written for Dionne Warwick in 1964, but the most popular version came 5 years later in ‘69 when Issac Hayes recorded it.
His version of this song is over 12 minutes long! But most of us probably listen to the much shorter version that was on the Dead Presidents soundtrack. a fucking good soundtrack if you ask me.
Warning (’94) - The Notorious B.I.G.
So technically, this was never a true single. It was released as a promotional track. It’s one of my favorite bops tho. who that fuck is this paging me at 5:46 in the morning…
Me Against the World (’95) - 2Pac
this song is cute.
I can hear the sample more in Biggie’s song than in Pacs.
p.s. Beyoncé used this sample in 6 Inch (2016 - yes i know this is outside our decades, but i had to recognize it! give it a listen, you will hear it!)
The Payback (1974) - James Brown
The Godfather of Soul is the most sampled artist of all MFing time! He has been sampled over 8,554 times!
Hold On (’90) - En Vogue
After the iconic a cappella intro, the guitars play. You can clearly hear The Payback’s influence. isn’t this such a great song? probably one of my favs from them.
My Lovin’ (You’re Never Gonna Get It) (’92) - En Vogue
Press play on this and immediately hear “the big payback”! i adore En Vogue, they need their own lunch!
Can’t You See (’95) - Total feat. The Notorious B.I.G.
Biggie did a rap verse on this track as a subtle ‘thank you’ to the trio for their vocals on Juicy and One More Chance. i did not know they were on Juicy, but now listening back, i hear them!
Everything (’97) - Mary J. Blige
Mary also sampled The Stylistics’ 1971 song You Are Everything for this track along with Brown.
Everybody Loves the Sunshine (1976) - Roy Ayers
Tell me you didn’t automatically think of the intro to Straight Outta Compton after you pressed play on that hyperlink.
At one point in Roy’s career, it was said that he was said to have more sampled hits by rappers than any other artist. Who knows, but his discography and credits are miles and miles long.
My Life (’94) - Mary J. Blige
If you know me, then you know this is my favorite Mary track and album.
Keys 2 the City (’10) - Nipsey Hussle
Okay so I have to admit, I just heard this song while looking up who has sampled this track from Roy, but I dig it.
Footsteps in the Dark (1977) - The Isley Brothers
This track off their 15th album marked the moment in Ron Isley’s career when he began to sing more ballads over keeping the funk sound.
It Was a Good Day (’92) — Ice Cube
This is his most popular track and a classic in hip-hop.
Since this song immediately makes you think of the movie Friday (’95), it indirectly introduced Footsteps in the Dark to a new generation of fans. i’m pretty sure i listened to ice cubes song before footsteps in the dark.
A Woman’s Worth (’01) - Alicia Keys
Close the Door (1978) - Teddy Pendergrass
This song firmly established Teddy as the top male sex symbol in soul music. it was also his stature and sultry voice that gave him that title.
Mary Jane (All Night Long) (’94) - Mary J. Blige
This song credits three different artists - a girl group called Mary Jane Girls, Teddy P, and Rick James.
At first, this song automatically made me think of Rick James’ song, Mary Jane, which then makes me think of the movie Friday (a lot of Friday references today), but listening to Close the Door, you can tell that is the heart of this song.
oh mfing goodness, this is my favorite album, hands down. i used to say this is my favorite Mary album, but i am going to stop pretending, this is my favorite album! scroll back up to roy ayers and you will see.
teddy’s life story is just…
Between the Sheets (1983) - The Isley Brothers
This song has been sampled over 13 times. The Isley Brothers were on The Breakfast Club recently. Mr. Big told us that they released this single to compete with Marvin Gaye’s classic hit, Sexual Healing. which one do you like better?
Big Poppa (’94) - The Notorious B.I.G.
This is probably his most popular song. It was also nominated for a Grammy in ‘96 for Best Rap Solo Performance, but the classic rap ballad lost to Coolio’s Gangsta’s Paradise.
Coolio sampled Stevie Wonder’s Pastime Paradise (1976) for this blockbuster hit. Because he sampled Stevie, this is one of the few songs by Coolio that has no profanity.
You can’t tell me that when you press play on this song, your mood doesn’t automatically get better.
Big Poppa was also used in the movie Hardball (’01) 😢 gbaby
Funkdafied (’94) - Da Brat
This is her most successful single and really her only major solo hit. It did go certified platinum, so if you only get one, you better get THEE one.
The Most Beautifullest Thing in This World (’94) - Keith Murray
When was the last time you listened to this track?
Superman (’95) - Skee-Lo
The opening to this song will make you think you are pressing play on BTS, but then it almost disappoints me. No shade to Skee-Lo, ‘I Wish’ is a good song, but that’s it.
Luxurious (’04) - Gwen Stefani
This is that era where Gwen was trying to be heavy with Black artists. i mean she had Slim thug on the remix.
Summer With Miami (’05) - Jim Jones
My FAVORITE song from Jimmy, and an all-time favorite. probably your favorite too. if you said ballin’, you’re lame.
On the Hotline (’06) - Pretty Ricky
This song is a mash-up of BTS, Rick James’ Mary Jane, and Grandmaster Flash’s The Message. And then the chorus is a modified version of Salt-N-Pepa’s Let’s Talk About Sex. talk about some heavy hitter classics they used for this one.
Not surprised Pretty Ricky would sample this track; they be nasty.
is Blue still in jail for taking part in those fraudulent PPP loans and then getting on the internet and cappin’?
La Di Da Di (1985) - Doug E. Fresh & MC Ricky D aka Slick Rick
This is a quintessential storytelling song where MC Ricky D (Slick Rick) takes you on a journey of a typical day in which he wakes up, washes his behind, gets dressed, and while leaving his apartment, drama happens between a woman who approached him and then her mother.
Not only did artists sample the sound of the song, but the lyrics have been used numerous times. It’s been sampled or sourced over 40 times by other artists!
Lodi Dodi (’93) - Snoop Doggy Dogg
Snoop basically rapped almost the same lyrics in his version of the song. these lyrics are wild.
Fun fact: The song's title is a reference to the town of Lodi, California, which is known for its vineyards and wineries.
No One Else (’94) - Mary J. Blige
The intro of this song samples the beginning "La Di Da Di" by sampling the phrase "there is no competition".
This song also samples Al Green’s Free at Last (’73). it’s the whole beat if you ask me.
Liberian Girl (1989) - Michael Jackson
You will debate forever on which MJ album is the best. I’ll just say my favorite MJ song (Dirty Diana) was on this album and the iconic Liberian Girl.
Keep On, Keepin’ On (’96) - MC Lyte feat Xscape
When I pressed play on Liberian Girl, I automatically heard MC Lyte and then said to myself SUNSET PARK WHAT TIME IS IT…
If you have not watched this classic ‘96 film that featured Fredro Starr, Terrence Howard, Skully from Snowfall (aka Stacey from The Wood), Malinda Williams, Worm from Coach Carter, Guy Torry, plus a few other extras that have now made it big like Gary Dourdan, our favorite CSI light-eye cutie, you need to watch it.
The video for this song is the epitome of a 90s Black music video that is on a soundtrack to a Black film. it’s the switching back and forth between the music video and scenes from the movie in a way that you will never see again for me. not to mention, Tiny was pregnant in this video with her first Zonnique (who is named after her babydaddy Zonnie aka Zeboe who was the dude Tiny was dating in the video ‘Who Can I Run To’), but sis still had allll the moves.
the streets say Tiny got with T.I. while Zeboe was in jail. about 7 or so years ago the two of them, T.I. & Zeboe, got into an internet scuffle when Tip posted a picture of Zonnique on ig with the caption “Mines!!!” chiiiillllllleeeeeeeee
i’m still giving tocha the stank face as i re-watched this video. i am just picturing her nasty ass attitude back then. check out the queens of r&b lunch if you missed it.
i went to the xscape concert on friday night and let me tell you they do not need la’tocha at all, so she can stay right on over there singing her praises to the good lordt! tameka held it down baaaabbbyyyyyeeeeee. she is the it girl and i love it for her, so much. especially after how she was treated during bravo’s queens of R&B.
Back to Liberian Girl for a moment. The cameos on this jawn are just…please watch this video. It will make you remember the art of music videos, and how they use to have stories within stories.
Honorable mention to Styles P for sampling Freda Payne’s 1976 classic I Get High (On Your Memory) and giving us Belly vibes in ‘02 with Good Times. if you did not get that reference…
okay, y’all. this is it. i can’t keep going. we will be at lunch forever. have a wonderful week friend. see you next time.
p.s. i hope i have inspired your music choice for the rest of the day.