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Sample Breakdowns of J. Cole, Daft Punk, Little Brother & more
Sample Breakdowns of J.
Cole, Daft Punk, Little
Brother & more

Our 'Sample Breakdown' video series dissects tracks to show how they were made. Not only by sharing the sample, but also visualizing how it was flipped or chopped. Learn from the greats.


J Dilla - Don’t Cry

Not a single note in J Dilla’s productions is wasted. Every unquantized drum, any loop, every fill, and every melody is placed with intent. His flip of “I Can’t Stand (To See You Cry)” by The Escorts (originally a track by The Whatnauts from 1973) is a perfect example. Dilla deconstructs the song and remodels it into a new structure. Even creating a new bassline while he’s at it.

Daft Punk - One More Time

For years, there were rumors that French production duo Daft Punk sampled music from disco artist Eddie Johns without approval. There wasn’t a mention of 1979’s “More Spell On You” in the liner notes of Daft Punk’s Discovery album, while all other samples were in fact mentioned. But it took till seven years after the release, before VIBE Magazine revealed the fact it was actually all cleared and legal.

J. Cole - Wet Dreamz

On top of the legendary Impeach the President break, J. Cole gave the chipmunk treatment to Family Circle’s “Mariya.” The song from 1973 was previously also sampled for tracks by The Game & Cappadonna. “Wet Dreamz” was part of J. Cole’s third studio album, 2014 Forest Hills Drive. The self-produced track was originally planned to appear on J. Cole’s debut album, but didn’t make the final cut. Half a decade later, soul music still seems to be a go-to genre for Cole, as the Tracklib sample he used together with producer T-Minus also shows.

Fatboy Slim - Praise You

One of the beauties of sampling is that any type of source material is fair game. “Praise You” by Fatboy Slim is a classic example of that. The track brings together spoken word, a cartoon theme, a piano riff from an audio demonstration record by JBL, and the into from a Disneyland album called Mickey Mouse Disco. All from the 70s, so bonus points to Fatboy Slim for the decade-correct combination of samples.

Little Brother - Lovin’ It

EPMD, J Dilla, Jay-Z, Nas, Big Daddy Kane, and countless of others found their way to sample the iconic Philadelphia soul of The Stylistics. And so did producer 9th Wonder for Little Brother’s “Lovin’ It.” The slowed-down sample of “One Night Affair” soulfully layered with thumping bass and drums makes for a perfect case of that mid-noughties Little Brother sound. “What’s that joint 9th sampling / Pooh and ‘Te on the mic, them bastards them…” Lovin’ it? The vast catalog of Philly Groove on Tracklib boasts the same taste of soul as The Stylistics.