The message is: Mars needs women

The more you think about it, the more ironically fitting it is that one of the biggest watershed moments in hip-hop history– the controversy over sample rights and sonic appropriation– was made by a 32-year-old TV commercial producer. Steve Stein was far from a dilettante; as one half of the megamix-specialist duo Double Dee and Steinski, he was already deep enough into the embryonic genre to change the game with his first release, 1983’s epochal sample-slayer “Lesson 1 (The Payoff Mix)”. […] Never mind that they weren’t virtuoso DJs and actually put the whole thing together using an 8-track recorder and a tape deck; this took hip-hop’s tradition of reformatting existing material and made it a postmodern funhouse.

From here.

If you only want to buy one record, I recommend you put your money on Steinski‘s What Does It All Mean? 1983-2006 Retrospective. If for no other reason than because it was impossible to do so for so many years – at least in Finland, where you can’t really get hold of bootlegs (the music wasn’t available¬† until 2008 due to the use of copyrighted material).

Besides being a milestone of hip hop, it’s an extravaganza for any film or tv nerd. For instance, Jazz starts with Daniel Stern and Ellen Barkin in Diner and ends with Kirk Douglas and Burt Lancaster in Tough Guys.

Someone might point out that it’s tacky to sample A Night in Tunisia with dj Cash Money or Jackson 5 with a speech by George W Bush. It isn’t. Just listen.


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