In the ever-changing world of music, sometimes a good sample, re-vamp or reference can work wonders. Sampling brings innovation and nostalgia, allowing artists to add their own flair while giving a shoutout to established hits.
Here are a few bump-worthy tracks that sample or make reference to some blasts from the past.
It seems fitting to kick off with Saweetie, as she’s known as the queen of samples and has a number of bops that shoutout older hits — including “My Type,” which samples “Freek-A-Leek” by Petey Pablo.
When this song first came out back in mid-2019, it was definitely the song to play on the dancefloor.
This USC alum also sampled “Blow the Whistle” by Too $hort to create “Tap In.”
The track was later remixed to feature Da Baby, Jack Harlow and Post Malone.
"Back to the Streets"
Saweetie and Jhené Aiko also included a sly Snoop Dogg shoutout on “Back to the Streets,” as one verse featured the line, “Pass it to Saweetie, now you hit it.”
This is a reference to “Ain’t No Fun” by Snoop Dogg, as he raps, “Pass it to the homie, now you hit it.”
And, of course, we have Saweetie’s breakout hit, “ICY GRL,” which samples “My Neck, My Back” by Khia.
The anthem was released as a single and included on her debut album, High Maintenance.
"F**k Dat N***a"
City Girls also sampled Khia’s magnum opus in their first-ever song, “F**k Dat N***a.”
This track put Yung Miami and JT on the radar and catapulted them to success, as it was featured on Quality Control: Control The Streets Volume 1.
21 Savage revamped “Many Men” by 50 Cent with his 2020 track of the same name, paying homage to the anthem while still adding his own flair.
This song was off of 21 Savage’s collaborative album with Metro Boomin, Savage Mode II.
The Game also revamped a well-known hit through “Celebration,” which featured a number of hip-hop heavyweights and was built around a line in “1st of tha Month” by Bone Thugs-n-Harmony.
“We having a celebration, let us stay high,” along with the recognizable beat, link the two tracks, which are all about kickin’ back with your homies and having a good time.
"Girls Love Beyoncé"
Segueing to some sad boi energy, we should acknowledge “Girls Love Beyoncé” by Drake.
The song references lyrics from “Say My Name” by Destiny’s Child, and it was included on his 2019 Care Package album; however, OGs will recall that the track first began circulating online back around 2013.
This same Destiny’s Child hit was also referenced in “Playing Games” by Summer Walker.
This track is beautiful all on its own, though Bryson Tiller added a little spin on it for the extended version of the song.
Staying on Summer Walker, she also gave “Weak” by SWV a shoutout in “SWV,” a song included on her 2020 Life On Earth EP.
“But I love to/ Love to feel so weak in the knees/ Oh like SWV,” she soulfully sings in the track.
"She Ain't You"
“She Ain’t You” premiered way back in 2011, and Breezy dedicated the song to MJ, whom he referred to as his “biggest inspiration of all time.”
Unless you’ve been living underneath a rock, you should’ve heard “First Class” by Jack Harlow by now.
Latto also provided a hit through “Big Energy” by sampling a well-known bop: “Fantasy” by Mariah Carey.
Mariah notably also graced the remix of this poppin’ track.
"Way 2 Sexy"
Drake also had a recent hit that threw it back to the 1990’s: “Way 2 Sexy.”
The song, which features a humorous and memorably video, samples “I’m Too Sexy” by Right Said Fred.
Megan brought Salt-N-Pepa’s iconic “Ooh baby baby” to a new generation with this track, showing the benefits that can come from a good sample.
There are also some occasions where sampling doesn’t go too well, which we got to see when Beyoncé sampled Kelis on “ENERGY.”
Once the song was unveiled, Kelis ultimately threw a fit and accused Beyoncé of theft, so the “Milkshake” sample was ultimately removed.
Finally, we have “Rain” by DJ Luke Nasty, which — much to Kirk Franklin’s consternation — sampled “Melodies From Heaven.”
Kirk Franklin wasn’t pleased with his gospel anthem being sampled on a song about strip clubs, and he responded to the sample by getting it taken off of Spotify and seemingly throwing shade online, according to MEAWW.
What other samples come to mind? Sound off in the comments to let us know.