Making Beats: The Art of Sample-Based Hip-Hop

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Wesleyan University Press, Jul 26, 2004 - Music - 240 pages
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Despite having created one of the most important musical cultures of the last fifty years, hip-hop composers who use digital sampling are rarely taken seriously as artists. But hip-hop deejays and producers have collectively developed an artistic system that features a complex aesthetic, a detailed array of social protocols, a rigorous set of ethical expectations and a rich historical consciousness.

Based on ten years of research among hip-hop producers, Making Beats is the first work of scholarship to explore the goals, methods and values of this surprisingly insular community. Focusing on a variety of subjects—from hip-hop artists’ pedagogical methods to the Afro-diasporic roots of the sampling process to the social significance of “digging” for rare records—Joseph G. Schloss examines the way hip-hop artists have managed to create a form of expression that reflects their creative aspirations, moral beliefs, political values and cultural realities.

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Making beats: the art of sample-based hip-hop

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Schloss (music, Tufts Univ.) explores the phenomenon of sampling, i.e., the borrowing of existing pieces of music and their inclusion into entirely new compositions. This phenomenon has been ... Read full review

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About the author (2004)

JOSEPH G. SCHLOSS is Lecturer in Music at Tufts University. He received the Society for Ethnomusicology’s Charles Seeger Prize in 2000, and his writing has appeared in URB, The Seattle Weekly, The Flavor and the anthology Classic Material. He lives in Brooklyn.

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