Hip Hop's Top Five 80s Soul Samples

God damn, if these ain't summa tha smoothest jams...
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God damn, if these ain't summa tha smoothest jams...

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He's best known for being one half of planet-straddling DJ power combo Groove Armada, but Tom Findlay has always been a soul man at heart. For the latest release by the righteously good Late Night Tales, he's picked his favourite automatic soul jams; a collection he says he wants to put you in the following frame of mind...

"It is 1983 and you’ve just stepped into your Ford Capri with your girlfriend Julie. You live in Harlow, but in your head you’re really somewhere near Salou in Spain, next to your yacht."

Sounds fucking great.

To coincide with this, he's selected a handful you'll recognise from some classic hip-hop tunes. Makes sure you have a listen to the album sampler below, it's wall-to-wall...


Mtume, 'Juicy Fruit'.
Sampled in the Notorious B.I.G.'s 'Juicy
'

'Juicy Fruit' is probably the most recognisable track on 'Automatic Soul', mainly because so many people know Biggie's smash. I could happily play these two back to back for hours.

Rene & Angela, 'I'll be Good'.
Sampled in Foxy Brown ft Jay Z's, 'I'll Be'

'I'll Be' was a big hit for Foxy Brown way back in '97 which makes significant use of this minor hit by the amazing Rene & Angela. 'Secret Rendezvous' is another unmissabele cut of theirs. Look out for their duiling DX-7 synths in the video.

Zapp , 'Heartbreaker'.
Sampled in Slum Village's 'Give This Nigga'

This brief Jay Dee production can be found on Slum Village's underground debut 'Fantastic Vol 1'.

Meli'sa Morgan, 'Fool's Paradise
Sampled in LL Cool J's 'Stand By Your Man' 

Never afraid to get sincere on the topic of love, if you're under the age of 25 or so you might not even know LL Cool J was a rapper before he was in NCIS: Los Angeles. The hook from Meli'sa Morgan's amazing jam is replayed here but unmistakable.

Dennis Edwards ft Siedah Garrett, 'Don't Look Any Further'.  Sampled in Eric B & Rakim's 'Paid In Full'

I've covered 'Don't Look Any Further' for 'Automatic Soul' with Ronika in a dub mix, reedit fashion. Hopefully our video improves on the original! The groove appears in so many hip hop tracks that its tough to name one in particular but I'll go for this classic by Eric B & Rakim.

Late Night Tales presents Automatic Soul is out 3rd Nov. There's a launch party (all the info on that here ) and that sampler is right below for ya:

https://soundcloud.com/latenighttales/late-night-tales-presents-automatic-soul-album-sampler