King Wizard is a prominent musician, producer/artist and melody maker. Often referred to as a genius by both press and collaborators, he has cheekily adopted this often repeated description by including it in his catchy beat tag ‘The Ingenious King Wizard!’
Alongside his partners Big Papa Harvey and Alderman he launched Underdog Music, a growing production company poised to not only take the industry by storm but also aid independent artists in their journey. Underdog music have been signing new producers and A&Rs as well as working alongside tons of Multi-Platinum producers and artists.
King Wizard draws on many of his talents in his work at Underdog Music. From being a talented producer, working on tracks with major labels, to working with upcoming artists and producers and helping them to develop. King Wizard is doing his part to help shape the future of the music industry. Underdog music recently signed two upcoming producers, Parallax and Southpaw who both came through their producer development programme. Discovering new talent is a major part of the music business, we look forward to seeing what Underdog’s new signings can do.
King Wizard explains the Underdog philosophy well. ‘We really don’t care if a producer has platinum plaques and hundreds of millions of streams, or if they’re working on headphones in their bedroom. All we care about is the music. All the fans care about is the music. It’s the music industry – music first, industry second’.
We love Wizards art-above-business attitude. Has this egalitarian attitude dented Underdog’s bottom line? ‘Not at all’ Wizard deflects, ‘we are more successful than ever. Financially successful, artistically successful, even spiritually successful. There are many ways to measure success, but they all stem from the same thing. If you create something that is of value and improves people’s experience of their lives, then you’re onto a winner. That could be something practical, something fun, or something that gives people’s lives fulfilment and meaning. Music is all three of those things. It’s a practical mood shifting medicine, a feel good fun activity whether listening or creating, and an activity that tends to give more fulfilment than any other pursuit I know.’
We love this analysis and wholeheartedly agree! In the music world, the music should always come first. It’s refreshing to see Wizard succeeding in such spectacular fashion whilst keeping these ‘music first’ values front and centre.
Discovering The Influence of Jazz and Soul in Hip-Hop Sampling
Hip-hop music has taken over the world since its ascension from the streets of the Bronx in New York City. Characterized by its unique blend of poetry, rhythm, and beats, hip-hop has produced some of the world’s most iconic musicians and songs. One of the hallmarks of hip-hop music is its creative sampling techniques, which involves using snippets of music from old records to recreate new sounds. But where do these samples come from? And what has been the major influence behind hip-hop sampling?
The answer is jazz and soul music. In this blog post, we’ll put jazz and soul music under the microscope as expert Benjy Grinberg explores how these genres have influenced hip-hop sampling.
Jazz Music Influence On Hip-Hop Sampling
Jazz music was a major inspiration behind the early days of hip-hop music. Jazz music was all about improvisation and freestyling, which is very much in the DNA of hip-hop. In the early days of hip-hop, DJs often looped beats from jazz records to create breakbeats, which became the building blocks of early hip-hop music. One of the most sampled jazz artists in hip-hop is none other than the legendary saxophonist John Coltrane. Coltrane’s music has been sampled in countless hip-hop songs, and his influence can be felt in the music of many hip-hop icons, including Wu-Tang Clan, Nas, and Kendrick Lamar.
Soul Music Influence On Hip-Hop Sampling
Soul music, on the other hand, was all about emotion and expression. The raw, unfiltered passion of soul music was aptly captured in the sampling techniques of early hip-hop producers. One of the most sampled soul artists in hip-hop is James Brown. Brown’s unique blend of funk, soul, rhythm, and blues has been sampled in countless hip-hop tracks. Brown’s “Funky Drummer” has become one of the most iconic samples in hip-hop and has been used by everyone from Public Enemy and Run-DMC to Dr. Dre and Kanye West.
Jazz And Soul Music As A Source Of Inspiration For Hip-Hop Sampling
As hip-hop music evolved, so did its sampling techniques. Producers and artists began to look beyond just using samples to create beats but also as a source of inspiration for their lyrics and melodies. Jazz and soul music became fertile ground for this kind of experimentation. Artists like A Tribe Called Quest, De La Soul, and The Roots infused jazz and soul samples into their music, not just for the danceable beats but also to add depth and richness to their lyrics and melodies.
Other Examples Of Jazz And Soul Sampling
Hip-hop’s rich history is peppered with countless examples of jazz and soul samples. Some of the most iconic tracks in the genre owe their existence to these tried-and-true sources. One example of hip-hop greatly influenced by these genres is “N.Y. State of Mind” by Nas. The track samples Joe Chambers’ “Mind Rain,” featuring a haunting and soulful beat with Nas’s gritty and introspective lyrics. Another iconic track that has sampled jazz is “Electric Relaxation” by A Tribe Called Quest. The track heavily samples Ronnie Foster’s “Mystic Brew,” creating a hypnotic and smooth rhythm that complements Q-Tip and Phife Dawg’s playful yet insightful lyrics. These songs and many more showcase the versatility and creative genius of hip-hop producers who have skillfully incorporated jazz and soul samples to create a new wave of music.
In conclusion, jazz and soul music have significantly influenced hip-hop music. Jazz represents the improvisational spirit and freestyling DNA that runs through hip-hop music, while soul represents the raw, unfiltered emotions that hip-hop music embodies. Jazz and soul music have been sampled and used as inspiration by countless hip-hop producers and artists, and their influence can be felt in the music of some of hip-hop’s most iconic names, from Wu-Tang Clan, Nas, and Kendrick Lamar to Public Enemy, Run-DMC, Dr. Dre, and Kanye West. According to Benjy Grinberg, without jazz and soul music, hip-hop music would not be what it is today – a global phenomenon that has influenced not just music but also fashion, art, and culture.
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