Haz’ BeatsHaz’Beats shows us his top five hip-hop releases that inspired him the most.
1. NWA – Express Yourself
Was one of the first songs my Uncle exposed me to at an early age. I couldn’t get enough of it really; constant repeats when I was growing up. The Charles Watts’s sample over that drum break was the best back in the days.
2. Nas – If I Ruled the World
It was the first ever cassingle I bought and it was the first time I had heard Lauryn Hill. My mates had the vinyl of the whole It Was Written album but I was too poor so I could only buy the single. The whole album is a classic now.
3. Jaylib – Stars
The whole producer/rapper creating music and rapping over their own beats thing on Jaylib’s Champion Sound album just amazed me. I tried to rap on my beats once; it wasn’t the same. The whole album is incredible.
4. Nujabes – Sky Is Falling
The production on this made me go crazy to know what sample Nujabes used. When I found out it was Gloria Lynne’s Thank You Early Bird I tried to re-create it, but it sounded wrong because he had used another sample for the horn parts – Eighties Ladies’s Turned On To You. This led me to loving sampled-based production and falling in love with the whole Nujabes’s sound. One of favourite producers.
5. J.Dilla – Ruff Drafts
Every joint Dilla made was a lead up to this solo project. To some, it’s an introduction to his sound; to others it’s those synths, those Dilla drum knocks and snappy snares that keep you bumping. For me, this was the project that made the world realise Dilla was a genius.