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Friday Flips (Week 9): The Sample History Behind Havoc's "Favorite Rap Stars" | Takin' Mines
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Friday Flips (Week 9): The Sample History Behind Havoc’s “Favorite Rap Stars”
By  |  05.10.2013  | 
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Nathan (Refined Hype):

Remember when Havoc and Prodigy had broken up and were trading homophobic insults via Twitter? Yeah, me neither. Sometimes denial can be a Mobb Deep fan’s best friend. But whatever the hell it was that happened, it seems to be in the rearview for Havoc now, which means we can once again concentrate on the music. And by “concentrate,” I mean obsessively dig into some sample history for Friday Flips.


Frankly I haven’t had the chance to fully dig into Havoc’s new album, 13, yet; it’s on my Hip-Hop to do list for the weekend. But I have listened to standout single “Favorite Rap Stars” over, and over, and over again:



Goddamn Havoc, now that’s how you make a beat that makes me want to slap my grandma in the face. (Sorry grandma, but seriously, that beat’s crazy).


Of course, Favorite Rap Stars is even better if you also recognize the sample off the Smut Peddler’s “One By One.” Consider a Rawkus classic by many, “One By One” found group producer DJ Mighty Mi lifting an absolutely filthy sample from Lyn Christopher’s “Take Me With You.” And if you’ve ever seen a picture of Lyn Christopher, it’s kind of hilarious to think that she would someday be a source for one of the filthier groups in rap history, but I digress…


1973: Lyn Christopher – “Take Me With You”


…the real question is, where did Havoc get his inspiration from? Was he listening to “One By One”? It’s likely, I’d be surprised if he didn’t hear the Smut Peddlers’ music floating around New York City back in the day. Did he hear the original and think the same thing as Mighty Mi? Also likely, Havoc’s been producing long enough to know how to do some good ol’ fashioned crate digging. Or did he hear the sample used on LL Cool J’s “Listen To My Heart Beat,” or Duo’s “3 Stories,” featuring DMX? We may never know.

2001: Smut Peddlers – “One By One”


But I do know that Havoc’s combination of “Take Me With You” and Melvin Bliss’ “Synthetic Substitution” (which we’ve covered previously), plus one of the better Hakeem Olajuwon punchlines in rap history from Styles P, adds up to the kind of track that should hopefully have everyone talking about Havoc’s music, not his Twitter drama, once again.


DJ Concept:

I remember the first time I heard ‘One By One’ by the Smut Peddlers it was another late night on WKCR. Stretch & Bob were bringing the exclusives as usual and that joint came on. I remember buggin out over it. The fact that the beat had this sinister vibe to it was what hooked me. Then to top it off the haunting but soulful female vocal was just the icing on the cake. I remember liking the song so much that I actually labeled the tape ‘New Smut Peddlers.’ I was rewinding the song all week.



The next week brought an even better surprise. I was listening to the Nighttrain show on WKCR which was a different show on Tuesday nights with Vaz and DJ Eli. They used to play about an hour of original samples in the beginning of the show. All of a sudden ‘Take Me With You’ came on. Being a crate digger I was surprised that I had never heard that original before and I had no idea who it was. I eventually found out who it was and still drop that original in sets every once in a while when I’m playing.



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Greg Grease – “Forward”



If you’ve managed to get this far during the week, you probably deserve a break. And what good timing to introduce Greg Grease‘s latest video for “Forward”, a stripped down, less-is-more banger that doesn’t need to be overdramatic to get it’s point across. Directed by Adam Dunn as a part of his #LABB (Lights and a Backdrop) series, the visuals are as minimalistic as it gets, allowing the Grease, his DJ and his turntable to play centre stage. Check it out and be sure to pick up Greg Grease’s Black King Cole EP if you don’t already own it.


  1. Blu & Nottz (feat. Rashad) – “End of the World”
  2. CJ Fly (feat. A La $oul & Phife Dawg) – “Seek Well”
  3. Boldy James (feat. Earl Sweatshirt, Da$h & Domo Genesis) – “Reform School” (prod. by The Alchemist)
  4. Danny Brown (feat. Scrufizzer) – “Dubstep”
  5. Black Milk – “Dismal”
  6. Alterbeats (feat. Guilty Simpson & The Rockness Monstah) – “Fruit Punch”
  7. Snow Tha Product (feat. CyHi The Prynce) – “Hold You Down”
  8. Freddie Gibbs & Madlib – “Harold’s”
  9. Childish Gambino – “Yaphet Kotto”
  10. Stan Ipcus – “Wifey Material”
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