Such a jam.
Dynasty era Jay-Z and his Roc-A-Fella squad were like the 90's Bulls. Burned so bright, but not for long enough.
Once again, we have another pre "College Dropout" Kanye West produced gem for this week's feature.
Houston's king, Scarface, (who sadly just announced he's in dire need of a kidney after his have failed since battling Covid-19), recruited Jay-Z and Beanie Sigel for his 2002 reintroduction record on dope slinging.
He told complex -
I spent a lot of time with Kanye when Kanye was doing a lot of beats. Kanye stepped in on that album. It’s funny how that shit works. Me and JAY-Z would talk for hours. That’s my dog. We’re homies. I fuck with ‘em all. Guru, Kanye, JAY-Z, Beanie, everybody over there at Roc-A-Fella was family. The whole New York was like my extended family.
For the longest I thought Jay-Z had pre-written shit and he would drop that down. But as time went on, I realized he was a freak of nature. He can hear a beat three times, listen to the beat ride once all the way through, and then lay his verse. I’ll be at the board writing my verse and he’ll already be gone. He’ll come in there sit, chat, and laugh, and then the beat will come on and he’ll write that shit in the middle of a conversation. The music will be playing and he’ll zero in and be like, ‘Ooh, ooh,’ and then lay that shit.
For the track Kanye went to his go-to winning formula, blending old with the new. Motown hook and core beat, reinforced with current popular sound elements.
The Originals - Sunrise
For the base of the track he took "Sunrise" by The Originals and used it's hook and riff as the foundation.
He then layered in drums from Dr. Dre's "Xxplosive"
And the legendary record from Slick Rick "Hey Young World"
"Men don't steal, MOST don't borrow. And if you smoke crack today, your kids will smoke crack tomorrow"
"Don't admire thieves cause they don't admire you."
The fact Kanye was giving away beats like this like they were a dime a dozen back in the 2000's is mind blowing.