What makes a great hip-hop beat? Fat Joe/DJ Premier–Thank God for that White

It seems like really good hip hop beats come out only every six months or so now. This beat by DJ Premier is definitely one of them. Hopefully Saigon’s album, produced mostly by Just Blaze, will come out within the next six months and contain many, many good beats.

This song exists in that great space between funk, soul, soundtrack, and library music, the kind of sampling DJ Premier helped pioneer. Perfect. Would fit in with a mix with music like Stereolab or some of Justice and Daft Punk’s sample-based tracks just as well as with other hip hop tracks due to the cinematic, semi-psychadelic, library music aspects all of the aforementioned music.  Portishead probably could use a few DJ Premier tracks…

mp3: Fat Joe–Thank God for that White (produced by DJ Premier)

courtesy of Spine Magazine


More Library Music, Soundtrack Music, and Hip Hop

Gary Pacific Orchestra!!!

Gary Pacific Orchetra Last.fm Similar Artists Station

Each song is like 50x better than the average hip hop beat, as most hip hop beats sample like 3-7 seconds of each of these songs. (See Dusty Fingers)…

Dick Walters – Silhouettes

Danielle Patucci – La Dimo Strzione (The outro of this song is CRAZY!!!!)

Frank Walton-Safari

Gator Soundtrack (Charles Bernstein)-Laying the trap

Jerry Gold Smith – Crossing the Border

Looks like you can find some interesting library music stuff on the Dreamtimetix blog…

Moogs, Library Music, Easy Listening, Exotica, Soundtrack Musicw


Ahh…this is the sound I love…bring the horns and the cushy strings…Francis Lai, Peter Thomas, Jerry Van Rooyen, Dorothy Ashby, Syd Dale, John Keating, Nick Ingman, James Last, John Fox, Jack Arel & Pierre Dutour, Brian Bennett, Mike Vickers, Mort Garson, Lex de Azevedo, Hollywood Cinema Orchestra, Keith Mansfield, François de Roubaix, Alan Hawkshaw, Steve Gray, Hugo Montenegro, Georges Teperino, Accadde A, Riz Ortolani, Tony Hatch, Francis Coppieters, Daniel Janin, Camille Sauvage, Monk Higgins, Lalo Schifrin. Do a “Jack Arel” similar artists station listen on last.fm…Bascially, a lot of this stuff sounds like that one Lalo Schifrin Portishead sample…soundtrack music…

Library music: funky bass and drums and guitar, insane moogs and other synths, strings, horns, and that strange feeling with some of this stuff where it starts to border on…muzak or easy listening…but then gets good again…last.fm has a lot of this stuff to listen to, it’s great! That Further Nuggets compilation sounds especially excellent. Psychadelic, exotica, jazz, blaxploitation, the roots of a lot of italo sounds and modern stuff like Stereolab, fountains of good hip hop samples too…a lot of this stuff can be found on the Dusty Fingers record series. I think we can extrapolate that Krautrock, Can, Faust, none of that would exist without this stuff. Compare Dorothy Ashby’s “Soul Vibrations” with a lot of Can stuff for example…Just Blaze sampled some Nick Ingman for example. I’m sure Madlib has a bunch of this stuff. But you know what, the real stuff sounds better anyway: hip hop, without live instrumentation, is getting kind of old.

Easy listening/exotica/big band: Frank Pourcel’s Similar Artists station on Last.fm

The more easy-listening side includes stuff like Percy Faith, Bill Pursell, Franck Pourcel, Frank Chacksfield, Edmundo Ros, Billy Vaughn, Nelson Riddle, Eddie Cano, Ray Conniff, Les Baxter, Tuby Hayes, Esquivel, etc. You can hear a lot of this stuff on the Escape channel (formerly the Sunny channel, which now plays different stuff) on XM Radio–also on last.fm. Favorites are the Gary Pacifc Orchestra and Jack Arel similar artists stations on last.fm.

Some highlights:

Accadde A-Accadde A Bali
Georges Teperino-Minor Mind
Daniel Janin-Fat Fat Fellow
Francis Coppieters-Sales Talk
Francis Lai-Rapt
Les Baxter-Pyramid of the Sun
Dorothy Ashby-Soul Vibrations

F. McDonald-Night Moves

Fred Bongusto-Una Rotonda sul mare

Generique-Dernier Domicile Connu

Gianni Ferrio-For Whom the Bell Tolls

Georges Garvarentz-Hashisch Party

Syd Dale-Let me take you there

Jerry Gold Smith-Crossing the Border

Janne Schatter-Atlanta Inn

Nancy Priddy-You’ve Come this Way

Billy Brooks-Fourty Days

Intimate Strangers-Love Sounds

Gary Pacific Orchestra-Soft Wind

Ed Scogillera-Compression

Danielle Patucci – La Dimo Strzione

Harnell-Jamie’s Theme

Hysear Don Walker-Children of the Night

Absolute Elsewhere-Future Past

The Pheonix Authority-

Not quite library music but equally enjoyable:
Gabor Szabo – Keep Smilin

Minnie Ripperton – Black Gold of the Sun

Lafayette Afro Rock Band–Darkest Light

Methinks they have a lot of this stuff at the venerable Dusty Groove

Some pretty fun easy-listening type library music by the Hollywood Cinema Orchestra can be found at:

pt 1

pt 2



frank chacksfield–you are my destiny