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What Went Right With Presents… The Top 25 Hip-Hop Songs That Sample Film Scores & Movie Soundtracks

A hollywood Walk Of Fame star with Hip-Hop music written on itHip-Hop and sampling go hand-in-hand like an amp and speaker, a gun and bullet, or money and greed. Aside from all the usual breakbeat and vocal sampling from other musical genres ranging from Soul, Jazz, Rock, Reggae to Pop, some Hip-Hop musicians have successfully sampled movie scores and made some brilliant music in the process. This isn’t a list of Hip-Hop tracks sampling film dialogue (I might do one of those in the future) but joints which contain actual music from film soundtracks. So without further ado, here’s my selection of the best silver screen samples…

25

“Young Urameshi” (samples Scanners)

By Ramirez

Looping Howard Shore’s fantastic score for David Cronenberg’s Scanners, RVMIRXZ raps over the beat and varies his flow…

24

“Keep Ya Eyes Open” (samples Diamonds Are Forever)

By N.O.T.S. Click

Subtly sampling Shirley Bassey’s “Diamonds Are Forever”, the title track from the James Bond movie of the same name, this is a rare gem indeed…

23

“Hang ‘Em High” (samples The Good, The Bad, And The Ugly)

By Sadat X & D.V. Alias Khrist

This sample of Ennio Moricone score is apt given Sadat X’s Wild Cowboys album and it’s overall wild west theme. Nexx Level Clique’s D.V. Alias Khrist elevates the track with his catchy hook…

22

“Casablanca” (samples Conan The Barbarian)

By Raekwon

Basil Poledouris’ “The Funeral Pyre” from Conan The Barbarian is used in this lesser-known track from the Wu-Tang Clan chef…

21

“Make Some Noize” (samples Candyman)

By Das Efx

Sampled by everybody from Canibus to Travis Scott, diggedy Das Efx’ sample of Philip Glass is one of the biggedy best…

20

“Suicide Bounce” (samples Dead Presidents)

By Nas & Busta Rhymes

Sampling Danny Elfman’s theme from Dead Presidents, this was one of the standout tracks from an otherwise disappointing album from Nas…

19

“Con Artists” (samples Basic Instinct)

By Skeme Team

Sampling Jerry Goldsmith’s theme from Paul Verhoeven’s Basic Instinct, this track is an underground classic…

18

“Banned From T.V.” (samples 2001: A Space Odyssey)

By Noreaga, Nature, Big Punisher, Cam’Ron, Jadakiss, Styles P

Swizz Beatz samples Richard Strauss’ “Also Sprach Zarathustra” (which was used in Stanley Kubrick’s 2001: A Space Odyssey) in this feature-heavy track from Nore…

17

“Don’t Do Drugs Kids” (samples Fantastic Planet)

By The Flatbush Zombies

René Laloux’ animated classic Fantastic Planet is juxtaposed with an ironic title from the psychedelic trio…

16

“Durango ’95” (samples The Omen)

By $uicideboy$

An appropriate sample of Jerry Goldsmith’s “Ave Satani” from The Omen, the $uicideboy$‘ best work is undoubtedly when it’s horrorcore…

15

“M.O.N.E.Y.” (samples Halloween)

By Half-A-Mil

This track was on the original pressings of Half-A-Mil’s debut album but seems to be missing from subsequent releases. It samples John Carpenter’s Halloween theme but does away with the horror…

14

“Thug War” (samples The Silence Of The Lambs)

By Wu-Syndicate

Howard Shore’s brilliant score from the classic thriller The Silence Of The Lambs is overlaid to give a more sombre feel. A great track from the often overlooked Wu-Syndicate…

13

“Bloody Money” (samples Rocky)

By Capone-N-Noreaga

Sampling “Philadelphia Morning” from Sylvester Stallone’s Rocky, this classic track from The War Report takes me right back to 1997…

12

“2-5 Taliban” (samples Jurassic Park)

By Tragedy Khadafi

Tragedy Khadafi (and an unknown rapper – leave a comment if you know who it is) takes the Jurassic Park theme by John Williams and turns it into a thugged-out joint…

11

“Genghis Khan” (samples The Thirteenth Floor)

By Jedi Mind Tricks & Tragedy Khadafi

Sampling The Thirteenth Floor, this heart-pounding track is taken from Jedi Mind Tricks’ flawless classic Violent By Design

10

“Urban Wilderness” (samples For A Few Dollars More)

By Call O Da Wild

EPMD’s sample of Ennio Moricone’s score from For A Few Dollars More almost made it to the list but DJ Muggs’ sample was utilised much better, especially with the underexposed duo Call O’ Da Wild on the mic…

9

“G.O.D. Pt. III” (samples Scarface)

By Mobb Deep

Sampling Giogio Moroder’s “Tony’s Theme” from Brian De Palma’s Scarface, this sample creates a simple yet brooding track and unlike Havoc and Prodigy’s “It’ Mine” it doesn’t water-down the Mobb’s hardcore sound…

8

“Return Of The Redi” (samples The Empire Strikes Back)

By King Just

John Williams’ “Imperial March” from Star Wars is not only sampled here, but the characters of the Star Wars saga are also referenced by King Just, one of the most underrated rappers of all time…

7

“Callahan” (samples Magnum Force)

By Clever-1

Sampling Lalo Schifrin’s score from Clint Eastwood’s Dirty Harry sequel Magnum Force, Clever-1 (of Da Buze Bruvaz) makes the theme his own in this underground banger…

6

“G.O.D. Part III (Remix)” (samples Phantasm)

By Mobb Deep

Mobb Deep’s remix of “G.O.D. Part III” from Hell On Earth is a classic golden era gem. Sampling the horror film Phantasm, this remix for me, is better than the original version (which is at number 9)…

5

“The Cookout” (samples The Godfather)

By Killarmy

Also sampled on Mobb Deep and Cormega’s “Crime Connection”, Nino Rota’s “Love Theme” from The Godfather was better used in this Killarmy song…

4

“What Ya Life Like” (samples Hard Rain)

By Beanie Sigel

Hard Rain was a crap film but Christopher Young’s superior score was sampled and given more pathos thanks to Beanie Sigel’s lyrics about prison life…

3

“Crush Linen” (samples Sudden Impact)

By Lake

Despite the intro sampling Brian DePalma’s classic Carlito’s Way, the music sample is from Lalo Schifrin and Roberta Flack’s “This Side Of Forever” from Sudden Impact which has been sped-up by producer Alchemist with Q.B. M.C. Lakey The Kid spitting his nonchalant lyrics over it…

2

“Gimme Some More” (samples Psycho)

By Busta Rhymes

One of the best and most original Hip-Hop tracks of all time, Busta Rhymes double-time flow over Bernard Herrmann’s theme from Alfred Hitchcock’s Psycho makes for a very unique and memorable song…

1

“Today” (samples The Untouchables)

By G-Dep

G-Dep (sometimes spelled “G. Dep”) is one of the most underrated MCs of all time and this track from DJ S&S’s Harlem World Order samples Ennio Morricone’s piano theme from Brian De Palma’s The Untouchables. The end result is a hardcore track like no other with certain lines somehow enhanced by the meaner parts of the score…

I’ve added a Spotify and Deezer playlist of movie-sampling Hip-Hop (containing songs available in their respective libraries). There’s a few bonus tracks in there too (to make up for the missing songs) so see if you can identify the movie samples!

From Tinseltown To Boogie Down.

Playlist is also available on Deezer (with missing song/s omitted). Click below…

WWWORW Deezer Playlist

Bonus Track: Eve’s “Tambourine” possibly samples Michael Kamen’s score from John McTiernan’s Die Hard. I thought I’d mention this extra song because I can hear sped-up sections from Kamen’s theme (specifically the Christmassy metallic clash sounds) in Swizz Beatz’ production, but it’s never been officially credited. Let the lawsuits ensue… 😁

2 replies »

  1. This is why I love your site. So many artists and songs I’ve never heard ( unlike Highsnobiety and Complex ) songs I’ve now gotta track down 😀

    You know your Hip Hop my friend!

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