Mark Ronson Defends the Art of Sampling
Multi-instrumentalist, producer, and DJ Mark Ronson took to the TED podium to argue in favor of sampling.

For Mark Ronson, sampling is an integral tool used to push music forward. Now clocking in at 40 years in practice, sampling in music is well integrated into our daily listening. As a staple technique for producers in various genres including hip-hop, pop and EDM, sampling allows us to relive something “old” in a new light. With that said, sampling often gets a bad rap for being “unoriginal” or lazy. Multi-instrumentalist, producer, and DJ Mark Ronson recently took to the TED podium to argue otherwise.

The producer of Amy Winehouse’s nostalgic Back to Black showed up prepared with his complete DJ rig including an MPC and turntables. To begin the presentation, he showcased his own sampling skills by performing an original sample-heavy production that borrowed from the TED theme and recordings of past TED speakers. Not a bad icebreaker for those unfamiliar with the art form.

While Ronson does proclaim that we live in a post-sample world and it must be embraced, he warns: “You can’t just hijack nostalgia wholesale. It leaves the listener feeling sickly. You have to take an element of those things and then bring something fresh and new to it.”

It’s no secret that here at Output we’re in love with sampling and the idea of tweaking original sounds into something new. It’s the driving force behind REV.

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