From the moment DJ Khaled’s breathless chant of “Another One” permeates the air at the beginning of “Wild Thoughts” the snare drum and tambourine act in conjunction with a sexy guitar; giving the listener a smooth ride to listen to for the next four minutes. Rihanna and Bryson Tiller exchange sexually charged verses over a silkily put together song that oozes “summer smash” In an interview with Power 105.1's The Breakfast Club, Khaled talks about how the song will take the summer based on his feature from Rihanna and Bryson Tiller. While this is partly true, the real reason is that the song samples Maria Maria by ___
Saying “samples” does the art of sampling injustice. The beat is a direct interpolation if Maria Maria, save for a few drums and hi hat patterns. Where the song succeeds comes from Rihanna and Tiller’s deft ability to ride a beat in a melodic manner, but the hit making groundwork of __’s Maria Maria. Khaled and party didn’t have to do much besides not messing up the foundation of a classic.
Hip hop’s fascination with sampling is nothing new. Tupac’s sample of Bruce Hornsby’s “The Way It Is” paved way for one of the most memorable songs of the 1990s. One of Kanye West’s mainstays is flipping unknown songs into chart topping singles.
Some songs are sampled more than others. “Juicy Fruit” by the funk group Mtume has been sampled 85 times. Perhaps the most notable of the bunch is “Juicy” big Notorious B.I.G, widely considered one of the best rap songs of all time. Artists such as Keyshia Cole and Tamar Braxton have sampled Mtume by way of Biggie — incorporating lyrics or mannerisms from “Juicy” to appeal to hip hop audiences.
With a majority of samples of “Juicy Fruit” coming after the critical success of “Juicy” a micoeocosm of a larger phenomenon was happening. A cheat code to selling records was unearthed. When in doubt, remake a chart-topping classic to jumpstart your career.
Ariana Grande’s first single “Put Your Hearts Up” was released in 2011 to lackluster reviews. It was a bubble-gum pop record that she would later disown, saying that that wasn’t her type of music. She would release “That Way” in 2013, a sexy reintroduction to Grande: stripping away her Nickolodeon roots. The song used a sample from “I Don’t Wanna Be A Player No More” by Big Pun and