Who Sampled It Better?

Who Sampled It Better?
Grandmaster Flash and The Furious Five

Back in the day hip hop was party music The purpose of emceeing was to get the crowd hype for the DJ. But MC’s have evolved to play the front while the DJ’s now play background. Unless you consider The Last Poets rappers, Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five were the first rap act to create socially conscious music. The Message is about the struggle. And the issues Grandmaster Flash addressed in that song are still relevant today. Who Sampled reports the song has been sampled over 270 times. But who sampled it better?

I’m obviously not going to go through 274 songs for this article. But I will examine 3 of my favorites. The first is Ice Cube:

Check Yo Self (remix)

Though not his most critically successful album, ‘Predator’ was Cube’s most commercially successful album at the time. It sold approximately 2 million copies. He used the Grandmaster Flash sample for Check Yo Self featuring Das Efx. And he kept it raw ; notice the shots taken:

You better check yo self before you wreck yo self
‘Cause I’m bad for your health
I come real stealth
Dropping bombs on your moms
Fuck car alarms
Doing foul crime
I’m that nigga wit’cha Alpine
Sold it for a six-o, always let tricks know
And friends know we got that indo
No I’m not a sucker sitting in a House of Pain
And no I’m not the butler, I’ll cut ya
Head-butt ya, you say you can’t touch this
And I wouldn’t touch ya, punk mothafucka
Here to let you know boy, oh boy
I make dough but don’t call me Dough Boy
This ain’t no fucking motion picture
A guy or bitch-a, my nigga get wit-cha
And hit you taking that yak to the neck
So you better run a check

So come on and chickity-check yo self before you wreck yo self
Chickity-check yo self before you wreck yo self
Yeah, come on and check yo self before you wreck yo self
‘Cause shotgun bullets are bad for your health

Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down

Can’t Nobody Hold Me Down was the debut hit single by rapper Sean “Puff Daddy” Combs. It appeared on Combs’ debut album ‘No Way Out’ and it was released as the first single in 1997. This song features Mase. Check out his verse:

Don’t push us, cause we’re close to the, edge
We’re tryin’, not to lose our heads, a-hah hah hah hah

Broken glass everywhere
If it ain’t about the money, Puff, I just don’t care (that’s right)
I’m that Goodfella fly guy, sometimes wiseguys
Spend time in H-A-W-A-I-I
(Mase can you please stop smoking lah lah?)
Puff why try? I’m a thug, I’ma die high
I be out in Jersey, puffin’ Hershey
Brothers ain’t worthy to rock my derby

Though I’m never drugged, I’m the venom in the club, G
Though I know the thug be wantin’ to slug me (uh-huh)
Could it be I move as smoove as Bugsy? (yeah)
Or be at the bar with too much bubbly? (c’mon)
Yo I think it must be the girls want to lust me
Or is it simply the girls just love me
Brothers wanna, rock the Rolls, rock my clothes
Rock my ice, pull out glocks, stop my life (uh)
I’m like, “Damn, how these niggas got they trust?
Used to be my man, how you gonna plot on my wife?”
Do you think you snake me, cause they hate me?
Or he got his Ph.D; Player Hater’s Degree? (Ahaha!)

Do Or Die

AZ is one of the most underrated rappers of all time. His debut album ‘Do Or Die’ was released in 95 and actually went platinum. He experienced moderate success afterwards when he teamed up with Foxy Brown and Nas to create The Firm. But I haven’t heard much from him since around 2001. The single Do or Die is different from the other two songs. AZ didn’t sample the music, so you wont notice any similarity to the original work unless you listen to the lyrics. But I’ve made it easy for you:

And all hoods I hang with mixed slang in they language
Love, kickin’ that gang shit, sellin’ on the same strip
Hustlin’ hard, no matter how much we hated
So dedicated, even our dreams are drug related
Shit, puff bananas, not even the cops can stand us
Cause of the way we vanish, everytime they come to can us
25 we get the money live – fuck all that funny jive
The streets is our only source to survive

And before any teeny-boppers think about tryin’ to stop us
Y’all rather put your head, through the propellers of a helicopter
Cause all my peeps be playin’ for keeps
Straight out the litter, so bitter
These bandits don’t even need sweets
Bringin’ the ruckus, like some mad motherfuckers
Move at night like truckers
When suckers see us, they duck us
Shit, only the real can relate to things a hungry man’ll try
It’s either doe or die

It’s like a jungle sometimes
It’s like a jungle sometimes
It’s like a jungle sometimes
The weed smoke makes me wonder
How I keep from going under
It’s like a jungle sometimes
It’s like a jungle sometimes
It’s like a jungle sometimes
The weed smoke makes me wonder
How I keep from going under

So there. 3 different artists sampling The Message. Who sampled it better? I’m going with Cube.

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