Classic Hip Hop Music Is Coming Back In Style

  1. Fade

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    I'm a big fan of old stuff, namely vinyl records, classic 90's Hip Hop, and vintage recording gear. That old saying, "everything comes back in style" is something that I strongly believe will play a big part (or is already doing so), with Hip Hop music.

    Vintage

    One of the most widely used kick drums ever in the history of Rap music, the TR-808 was a classic piece of hardware that was widely used on most songs back in the 80's and 90's. Even today, that kick is still being used all of the time with new styles such as Trap because of its thick, booming sound. What's interesting is that even though the gear is old and not used much in today's productions, the sounds still are.

    Now there's news that the TR-808 (and now the TR-909 as well) is coming back in a new form, and this time it will be some sort of new hardware. The people behind it are not giving much details as to what they will be putting out on the market, but it leaves one to believe that it will have a big impact on how music will be made, but more importantly, will it bring in a new wave of vintage audio?


    I use Maschine for my beats and it's very convenient because I can do a lot, and pretty much everything in it. Whereas before I had to use a drum machine, sampler, and a keyboard, along with a 4-track cassette recorder, now it's all streamlined into this one little box, backed of course, by the software. However, I still see lots of people selling old gear online and it makes me wonder how many people are still buying Akai S950's, MPC 60's, and SP1200's.

    New Era

    Everything comes back in style and I believe (and hope too) that more sample-based Hip Hop will come back. I already hear it happening more and more, not only because of vintage gear, but also because of the internet and the simplicity of finding samples to jack. Because you can be anonymous online, or a derivative of it, I believe that artists aren't too worried about sampling and the legal clearance that goes with it. They can always claim that their unreleased tracks were "leaked", no?

    Vinyl record sales are on the rise, and the compact disc is basically dead. Online MP3 purchases are holding steady in first place, but the vinyl is there. And it's growing. Not only are classic LPs being re-issued, but now new albums are being released on vinyl as well, and that's a good sign - but who is buying all the vinyl?

    Most will say that the younger generation is buying it, and I believe that. Along with hipsters, of course, they're the ones that have started this whole vinyl "coolness", if you will, but the vinyl was always there, just very, very underground. Hip Hop heads know what I mean because vinyl was very much alive in the 90's and into the early 2000's, right before MP3 became the new term to use when referring to music.

    It's Coming Back

    If you were to search around, you can still find plenty of people out there looking for parts for their SP12, or the original manual for their E-MU ESI-32, and that tells me two things:
    1. People are collection old gear.
    2. People are using old gear.
    Why are they using old gear? Because everything comes back in style.

    Take a look at the E-MU SP1200. This is a classic sampler from way back that is a real beast when it comes to Hip Hop beats. The reason is because it had a 12-bit sound that gave your beats such a rough sound, and thus it was perfect at the time for Rap music. Today, you can emulate that sound with various plug-ins or even with some hardware/software trickery, but it's nowhere near the awesomeness of the SP1200.

    If people are using old gear, it must be because they just want to try something different for their beats, or they want to get that old sound again. I'm hoping it's the old sound because it would turn the music industry upside down and force record labels to put every selection of their catalog on vinyl.

    Software is convenient, and so are MP3's, but at the end of the day I get the feeling that the current way of producing and listening to music will change and people will go back in time. Or at least I can hope!

    What do you think?
     
  2. toryhooks

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    Im in tital agreement with you @Fade..........im a 90's guy also, and love the vintage sound. This new stuff is getting played out, and you can only synthesize your beats for so long. Long live the sampling. As far as rap also, you can only talk about gettin money, having sex with numerous women, going to the club and about kickin it with my Ninjas for so long, its horrible. Id rather hear Old Master P rap than this stuff today. Keep grinding Fade, love your articles.
     
  3. Fade

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    Thanks for the feedback!

    It's not just about 90's stuff, but basically just the whole style of today is and will be played out. Like you said, there's only so many times you can rap about fantasy stuff. Rapping about the ghetto can be played out too, but at least most people can relate to it.
     
  4. Pug

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    There's something awesome about old gear. I loved my ASR-10, BUT the disk drive was starting to fail so I sold it. That and I was having trouble with my overall setup. I've replaced it with a Maschine, which is real nice, but I miss the effects processor of the ASR.