We’ve known for years that many songs are sampled over and over again and are featured in some of the most popular songs. It’s not always obvious that a song has been sampled and sometimes only a well-trained ear can spot a sample in a song.
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Check out the top 10 most sampled songs of all time (we used WhoSampled as our source) and see if you can rrecognize them in other songs:
1. Change the Beat by Fab 5 Freddy
This classic first came to life in 1982 in Brooklyn NY when it was recorded by Fab 5 Freddy. Change the Beat has since been sampled 1563 times, making it the most sampled song of all time. You may have heard some bits and pieces of this song in Thrift Shop by Macklemore and Ryan Lewis featuring Wanz, Right Here by Justin Bieber featuring Drake and So Far… by Enimen. Have a listen and see if it sounds familiar:
2. Amen, Brother by The Winstons
This 1969 song has been sampled 1529 times and features in songs like Can’t Knock the Hustle (Desired State Remix) by Jay Z featuring Mary J. Blige and even Scary Monsters and Nice Sprites (The Juggernaut Remix) by Skrillex. Do you recognise it?
3. Think (About It) by Lyn Collins
Lyn Collins’s 1972 song, Think (About It) has been sampled 1123. This song has been sampled by Kanye West in his songs So Appalled and Lost in the World, both of which featured on his 2010 album My Beautiful Dark Twisted Fantasy. Have a listen to this classic:
4. Funky Drummer by James Brown
The musical genius that is James Brown features on the list twice. Funky Drummer earned the fourth spot by having been sampled almost a thousand times. Artist like Jay Z, Dr. Dre and Nas have sampled the song. We’re sure you’ll know this one:
5. La Di Da Di by Slick Rick and Doug E. Fresh
We think this 1985 song is one of the more obviously sampled songs and we clearly recognised it from We Won’t Stop by Miley Cyres and Beyoncé’s Party. You might also remember when Snoop Dogg and Doug E. Fresh preformed a version of the song in 2011. Sampled over 600 times, we’re sure you will recognise it too:
6. Funky President (People it’s Bad) by James Brown
James Brown features again with his 1974 song Funky President (People it’s Bad). Well, people think it’s really good and the song has been sampled 584 times, which includes songs like 3000 by Childish Gambino and Live Fast, Die Young by Rick Ross. Some more James Brown for you to enjoy:
7. Impeach the President by The Honey Dippers
This 1973 song has been sampled over 500 times and has been sampled by artists like J. Cole and Nas. Have a listen and see if you can pick up some familiar sounds:
8. Bring the Noise by Public Enemy
Bring the Noise has been sampled 561 times and has been in songs like Ludacris’s How Low and Wretches and Kings by Linkin Park.
9. Here We Go (Live at the Funhouse) by Run-D.M.C.
The list wouldn’t have felt complete if it didn’t include hip hop group, Run-D.M.C.. Here We Go (Live at the Funhouse) was first performed in 1983 and has since been sampled 535 times. You may recognise it from Prodigy and The Alchemist’s 2013 song, Curb Ya Dog:
10. Synthetic Substitution by Melvin Bliss
Rounding of the list of the most sampled songs is 1974 Synthetic Substitution by Melvin Bliss. The song has been sample over 500 times and can be heard in My Life by 50 Cent featuring Enimen and Adam Lavine. Have a listen: