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Production Breakdown: Curtiss King’s “Ren & Stimpy”

Posted by Richard on 02/06/10 | Filed under Features, Production Breakdown, Curtiss King
Curtiss King Snick @ Nite Mixtape
I hate to say it, but there were almost too many great beats in the Booth this week. Let's see... Miami's ArtOfficial brought us “Doing Things Wrong,” featuring a fresh live-band instrumental complete with an extended piano outro, Kanye made Joni Mitchell sound like a man on “F*ck the Money,” an ingenious track off B.o.B's May 25th mixtape, Memphis Bleek announced that he was “Still Ill” over a beat packed with harpsichord (seriously, I think that the harpsichord is long overdue for a comeback). Like I said, too many.

The instrumental that got my gears turning the most vigorously (if gears can even turn with varying degrees of vigor), though, was that of West Coast up-and-comer Curtiss King's self-produced “Ren & Stimpy”, sampled, of course from the classic gross-out cartoon's theme song (“Dog Pound Hop,” performed by animator Jim Smith). While not everyone in the Booth was digging the record's bouncy, jokey vibe, it's hard to deny the sample potential of TV themes – I mean, watching massive amounts of television is one of the only things just about all of us (aside from the Amish and those intellectual snobs who spend their time reading books*) have in common, so if you're going for universal appeal, I can hardly think of a better strategy.

Interestingly, it seems that relatively few of note have taken advantage of this tactic. You've got Wale, of course, who flipped the Seinfeld theme to spectacularly dope effect on the Best Kept Secret-produced first track off his Mixtape About Nothing



...and Will Smith, who lamented that “Girls Ain't Nothing but Trouble” on this I Dream of Jeannie-sampled track:



(I have to say, I think most guys would put up with almost any amount of trouble if it meant having an attractive female genie tending to their every need and calling them “Master.”)

One of the most popular choices, according to whosampled.com, has been the theme from David Hasselhoff-starring sci-fi series Knight Rider , which sounded like a rap beat from the get-go. It was famously sampled in Busta Rhymes' '98 hit Fire It Up (co-produced by the artist and Spliff Starz).



While Curtiss King has the market on Nickelodeon rap cornered with his Snick @ Nite mixtape (out now), it looks like there's still a lot of ground to cover. Anyone else have any favorite TV-theme sampling tunes that I've forgotten, or suggestions for artists to consider in the future? Personally, I'm thinking a '70s game show-themed mixtape would be pretty damn dope...



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*You know, the kind of nerds who would use footnotes in a blog post.

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