The code of the beat.

HDBeenDope – “Barons 94” (Prod. by Lester, Nowhere): A Style & Sound Lives On


The Beautiful Merger of Past and Present

Committed to the style and sound of sampling. That’s where we are despite the reports of sampling being dead in hip hop/rap. In fact, we have reached the point where the proverbial ’90s is no longer mere inspiration for a growing number of new rappers and producers, but something that is rooted in the now. Put another way, contemporary hip hop music makers like HDBeenDope have completely absorbed the essence of the early/mid-’90s rhyme flows and beats, made it their apparatus for self-expression, and proudly merged it with the ethos of their generation.

What’s essential to understand about this is that it can hardly be defined as a trend, as hip hop/rap has always — contrary to popular belief — been about extracting and repurposing parts of hip hop/rap’s history.

But I would be remiss if I were to simply describe HDBeenDope as the echo of golden-era history. His lyrical confidence, though aided by the aforementioned history, is still powered by his sense of now and his generation’s sense of freedom; a sense one can engage in any musical style or sound that befits them. And on “Barons 94” (prod. by Lester, Nowhere — dope sample-based beat), the Brooklyn rapper soars with a sound that boasts his rhyme talent while putting to bed the idea of sampling as just a borrowed memory lane.

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About Author

Amir Said (aka Sa’id) is the founder and Editor-in-Chief of BeatTips. A writer, publisher, and beatmaker/rapper from New York, Said is the author of a number of books, including ‘The BeatTips Manual,’ ‘The Art of Sampling,’ ‘Ghetto Brother,’ and ‘The Truth About New York.’ He is also a recording artist with a number of music projects, including his latest album 'The Best of Times.' Follow him on Twitter at: @amirsaid and @BeatTipsManual