The Amen Break

Esta es la historia del drum loop quizás más utilizado y sampleado. Es increible como varios estilos de música electrónica, como son el drum & bass y en parte el hip-hop, se pueden sustentar sobre un loop que apenas dura 6 segundos, contenido en una cara B publicada en 1969!

The "amen break" is one of the most-used sampled drum loops in jungle and drum and bass music, together with the "funky drummer" drum loop. The amen break is four bars of the drum break lifted from the song "Amen Brother" as performed by the 1960s funk/soul outfit The Winstons. The song is an uptempo, instrumental rendition of the gospel music classic "Amen". The Winstons’ version was released on a 45 rpm 7" vinyl single in 1969 on Metromedia, and is currently available on several compilations and on a 12" vinyl rerelease together with other songs by The Winstons. It is unknown, but doubtful, whether the drummer, G.C. Coleman, has received any royalties for the sampling of his drum part.

The amen break in its different forms - looped straight as in old-skool drum and bass or totally cut up and rearranged as in some tunes by artists like Squarepusher and Aphex Twin - is used in literally thousands of drum and bass songs and (notably) many hip-hop tunes, such as NWA’s "Straight Outta Compton".

The Amen break’s popularity probably lies in both the rough, funky, compressed style that the drums are recorded in as well as the swing and groove of the drummer that originally played the solo. The original song is also quite fast, making it more suitable for uptempo music genres such as jungle/drum and bass.

"The history of the Amen Break" (QuickTime Video, 35Mb)

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