Wu-Tang Clan Reflects On 20 Year Anniversary
RevoltTV reflects with Shyheim, Rae, Deck, Cappa
with Cam’Ron, Jadakiss, Steve Rifkind
with U-God, Shyheim, Cappadonna, Masta Killa
Is Sampling Dying?
How greenbacks and red tape are tearing the heart out of hip-hop.
By Matthew Newton 11.21.08 4:29 PM
Simple beats and Auto-Tuned vocals form the foundation of 808s & Heartbreak, Kanye West’s latest release. As the title implies, it’s a breakup album. But perhaps the split is deeper than even West realizes. His new sound is a bold departure from his previous efforts, but also a challenge to the parameters of what many listeners would consider hip-hop. 808s & Heartbreak doesn’t rely on an element once pervasive in the genre: samples. The album doesn’t contain any prominent samples, while West’s previous release, Graduation, featured them on 10 of its 13 tracks. He is not alone in this change: Young Jeezy’s last album, The Recession, boasts just three samples, and T.I.’s latest, Paper Trail, features only four.
The staple of hip-hop’s beatmakers for nearly 30 years, sample-based production has slowly eroded over the past decade, due to rising costs and rampant litigation. Today the average base price to clear a sample is $10,000, and the threat of lawsuits over copyright infringement looms heavy over artists and labels. High-profile rappers have become legal targets for music publishing companies, while independent MCs struggle to compete. With no standardized pricing, the prohibitive cost of samples has altered the creative approach of many hip-hop producers. The trend toward purely electronic production — synthesizers, drum machines, Auto-Tune — has injected major stylistic changes into the genre, with producers like the Neptunes, Timbaland, and T-Pain at the forefront.
“The art form of hip-hop — the sound that attracted us to it — is diminishing,” says RZA, Wu-Tang Clan producer and MC. “It’s becoming just another form of pop music.”
Continue Reading “Is Sampling Dying?”
Came across this post via WTC. After somebody wanted to know who mixed Enter The Wu-Tang, Carlos came through and locked it down.
Just so you know:
Hey!! Just wanted to contribute to this post. This is a list of all the gear that I used to record and mix the first wu-tang album.
Peavey Production Series 2400 With Megamix Automation (Run with a Mac SE-30)
Ampex MM1200 24 track – Originally own by Prince. “Purple Rain” album was recorded with this machine.
The majority of the record was recorded on 2″ tape except “Protect your Neck” which was record on a Tascam MS16 16 track 1″ reel with Without Dolby NR
Continue Reading “Who Mixed 36 Chambers”
Top 10 Wu-Tang Clan Bangers
10. “Take It Back” â€“ from 8 Diagrams (SRC, 2007)
While a large chunk of the material on the group’s latest salvo is mid-to-down tempo in nature, this track kicks up serious dust thanks to a streamlined bass throb, keyboard ripples, and juggernaut bombast. It’s one of those quietly intense affairs that the Wu has come to dominate.
9. “Shame On A Nigga” â€“ from Enter The Wu-Tang (36 Chambers) (Loud, 1993)
The pulsating horns, chunky bass jumps, and a scatological introduction courtesy of Ol Dirty Bastard in which he reaffirms that he’s “live and uncut” is truly classic beyond belief or reproach. Each other member, from Meth on down gets theirs, as well, making for a gritty exercise in unification.
8. “Soul Power (Black Jungle)” â€“ from Iron Flag (Loud, 2001)
Featuring the incomparable Flavor Flav on the chorus drop exclaiming “2000 and 2, representin’ the muthafuckin’ Wu…” as well as a thick and juicy ’70s funk-cum-blaxploitation groove switched up by RZA that percolates around kick drums, lumbering bass, and flute loops. Rich and meaty to the hilt.
Continue Reading “IGN’s Wu Bangers Top 10…”