Grandmaster Flash and the Spectacular Samples

This week on 7 o clock sample, we are looking at hip hop pioneers GRANDMASTER FLASH and the FURIOUS FIVE.

In the late 1970s, the idea of recording Rap music was an odd concept.  Hip Hop culture developed from the “have-nots” of our society, so the high price of recording a track, was not an option.  Even when rap labels and managers came on the scene, the process of recording Hip Hop was not the same as the performance.

Take Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five for example.  Melle Mel, Kidd Creole, Cowboy, Mr. Ness/Scorpio, and Rahiem were the hype men for the DJ.  They acted as the link between the record the Flash was playing, and the dancers on the floor.  As the fellas began to develop “raps” over certain breaks, the Hip Hop SONGS were born.  These songs would be different every time you would see them performed, and often, they were not perfect.  A record could skip, or the loop may not completely come together, changing the dynamic of the song.

When SUGAR HILL RECORDS signed GMF and the FF, they were in the practice of recording Hip Hop tracks with live studio bands.   The early Hip Hop hits of the late 70s and early 80s were mostly recreated samples, played by studio musicians.

So while today’s example may not be a true SAMPLE, it stemmed from the records that Grandmaster Flash was sampling in the live shows.

Here is the original record that Flash would loop for at the break….

Funk jam!

Here is how the Sugar Hill band and the Furious Five recorded the track…


One Response

  1. Thjis was also used for Crash Crew’s “High Powered Rap” at about the same time as GMF.

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