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Erykah Badu Recalls How J Dilla Taught Her How To Sample On An MPC 2000

Erykah Badu Recalls How J Dilla Taught Her How To Sample On An MPC 2000

Erykah Badu Performs at Summer Spirit 2018
Photo Credit: Vickey Ford of Sneakshot Photography

Fun fact: the song that J Dilla showed Erykah Badu how to sample ended up being the basis for her song “Didn’t Cha Know.”

During an appearance on Sonos’ Radio Hour series, Erykah Badu recalled how J Dilla taught her how to sample on an MPC 2000 when they were working together in his basement in Detroit.

“…he has this massive record collection and he told me to go and flip through the records, and I pulled out this one record by Tarika Blue. I didn’t know who that was or anything, I just pulled out the record, put it on the turntable, put it on the first song, and the first song was called ‘Dreamflower.’…I told him, ‘Dilla, this is the part I wanna sample,’ and he goes, ‘OK, well, sample it.'”

“He showed me how to do that. How to quantize — he’s not a real quantizer, you know? He plays all the drums live, generally. But he showed me how to loop these parts,” she added.

Blue’s “Dreamflower” ended up being the basis for “Didn’t Cha Know,” one of the standouts from Badu’s Mama’s Gun album.

As a part of the appearance, Badu also shared an hour-long mix that included songs from Tarika Blue, Junie Morrison, The Futures, Don Blackman, and others. The interview and mix can be listened to below.

Recently, Badu appeared on Ebro Darden’s The Message playlist and interview series on Apple Music. During the episode, Badu shared her thoughts on how she’s coping with ongoing issues the nation is experiencing, as well as shared a playlist that included tracks by Earth Wind & Fire, Donny Hathaway, and Quincy Jones.

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When speaking on the playlist Badu said, “These are songs that I truly and really wake up to every day, that I play in the car when I need it.”

“It’s the vibe for me, it’s the freak for me, it’s what uplifts me or brings me to tears or makes me very, very, very sad. The kind of sad that you want to feel when there’s some good music in your spirit. The tears that bring joy. These are real for me. And sharing them with you is a very personal and real thing for me,” she added.

Sonos Radio is a free streaming radio service that will feature curation from artists like Badu, A$AP Ferg, Dolly Parton, and more.

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