Co-founder of London’s leading hip hop night Livin’ Proof, DJ Snips is a regular fixture in both London and NYC’s club scenes, having spun for the likes of Kanye West, Mos Def and The Black Eyed Peas.
Also holding a weekly spot on Kiss FM’s KISSTORY, Snips’ talents cross over into production and songwriting, with credits across hip hop’s underground over the last ten years.
His new EP, London Livin, will be released via newly launched label Barbershop records. Drawing on influences that stretch across house, nu soul, hip hop, jazz and disco, the four-track release features spoken word artist William Stowe, soul artist Emmavie and North London MC Awate.
Creating a record that draws as much as to the dancefloor as it does classic boom bap, we asked Snips to dig through some of his favourite tracks and producers that have been key in revolutionising the bond between the two genres. Classics from Kenny Dope, Todd Terry, Andres and more…
1. Andres – New For You
Andres basically makes house music for hip hop & Soul purists who otherwise wouldn’t listen to house music. I would say he’s been one of the biggest influences on me having also come from such a strong hip hop foundation. This song is a great example of how using hip hop production techniques to make a house record can work perfectly.
2. The Bucketheads – The Bomb
It doesn’t really get any better than this. As one half of house music royalty Masters At Work, Kenny Dope is equally as great a hip hop producer as he is a house producer. A chopped break, filtered bassline and big horn sample – By solely looking at the ingredients of this record you could assume I was talking about a golden era Pete Rock track.
3. Pepe Bradock – Deep Burnt
This sounds like a record we would have got from Dilla a few years prior, had he followed in the footsteps of some of his Detroit counterparts. The song itself is based off the same Freddie Hubbard loop Dilla previously used for Tribe’s “The Love”. The sub bass under the filtered strings and the snappy sampled drum hits make this song a favourite for hip hop and house heads alike…. Just ask Just Blaze!
4. Royal House – Can You Party / Jungle Brothers – I’ll House You
We have to talk about these two records as if they are one and the same. Royal House was the alias of Brooklyn based hip hop head Todd Terry. Terry created house music’s equivalent to hip hop DJ based records like “DJ Premier In Deep Concentration” or “The Adventures Of Grandmaster Flash On The Wheels Of Steel”. A cut and paste style journey through the sounds that helped shape house Music as a genre. This record was used only a few years later as the backdrop for the Jungle Brothers crossover smash “Ill House You”. A Further testament to the original’s fluidity to sit between genres.
5. Hot Music – Soho
There is still some debate as to whether this is even a house record but creator Pal Joey definitely believes it to be so that’s good enough for me. One of the only house tracks to get constant burn in hip hop clubs in the early ’90s, it sat perfectly alongside instrumental hip hop classics like Show & AG’s “Party Groove” and Public Enemy’s “Welcome To The Terrordome. I have used this record for years as a bridge in my sets to go between playing house, uptempo soul and classic hip hop. It’s the perfect hybrid record that works with any crowd.
London Livin’ is out September 21 on Barbershop Records.
Preorder it here.