I don’t seem to listen to that much hip hop these days, but one of the things that I love about the genre is how much it teaches me about the history of music. Rock and indie bands often sound very similar to the artists who came before them and influenced them, sometimes in a quite a derogatory way, which can be a bit dull if you know your music history. But the thing I like about hip hop artists is that they sample music that sounds nothing like hip hop. This means that from hip hop you end up listening to really diverse and often obscure music that might otherwise get lost.
Many a 70’s band has won a new found fame through hip hop samples, and for me its been an education that has taught me about dub, funk, soul, R&B, blues, jazz, 80’s electro, garage, post punk, disco, and who knows what else. Finding the original samples used on hip hop records was a fun and geeky hobby – something I’ve recently rediscovered through the digital magic of Spotify.
I thought I’d share a couple of gems here, some great music that I might not have heard without listening to hip hop.
War – Magic Mountain
ESG – UFO
Lyn Christopher – Take me with you
The Emotions – Blind Alley
Art Blakey & The Jazz Messengers – A Chant For Bu