Pete’s jazz comes alive in this 31-hour-plus playlist of sample source material
Today, we tip our hats and raise a glass to Pete Rock on the legend’s 47th year of terrestrial living. Emerging from Mount Vernon, NY with CL Smooth as an innovative jazz-flushed force in hip-hop in the early nineties, PR earned his stripes as a trusted and learned suite-constructor amongst NYC’s elite wordsmith, attaining master-level reverence by the time he and J Dilla crossed paths, at which point teacher quickly went back to school as one of hip-hop’s most vocal (and humble) advocates of the late producer’s GOAT status.
As such, PR remains one of the few producers we’ve been able to learn and grow with over the years; “inventing the remix” in the jazz-leaning nineties aughts, putting the boom in boom-bap in the hard-nosed mid-decade swing, bringing soul to a turn-of-the-century revival and building the ladder upon which commercial rap reached its meteoric peak just before the mp3 went bust. Pete Rock’s been there for it all and you still only need to hear the drums to know it’s the Chocolate Boy Wonder at work. And what a rare joy that is.
Hear nearly every sample in Pete Rock’s archive in a new installment of our Cheat Sheet series below and hit the link to subscribe to our Spotify channel for even more excursions into the weird and wild world of sampling via J Dilla, Dr. Dre, Kanye West and Prince Paul’s respective catalogs.