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My blog is my space to highlight academic work outside of my formal publications. Posts vary from short essays to album reviews to exemplary student work to small sample-digs that I use as warm-ups for my courses. This blog also contains the burgeoning archive of artist interviews that I am collecting for my dissertation, "Writing in the Break."

  • Writer's pictureTyler Bunzey

Digging the Digital Crates: George Clinton's Hip-Hop Legacy

Listen from 4:08

Don't recognize the voice? If you were born pretty much any time after 1985, you most likely don't recognize the name credited on the record either--George Clinton. George Clinton performed with the bands Parliament, Fundakelic, and Parliament Funkadelic throughout the 1960s-1980s. Clinton began working with the doo-wop group The Parliaments in the 1950s but shifted his style drastically in the 1960s with influences like Jimi Hendrix, Sly Stone, and other psychedelic artists. P-Funk is most famous for their three albums Maggot Brain (1971), Mothership Connection (1975), and One Nation Under a Groove (1978). You may recognize one of their hit singles "Give Up the Funk" (1976).

Parliament has been sampled many times in hip-hop including Dr. Dre's "Let Me Ride ft. Snoop Dogg" (1992):

Which samples Parliament's "Mothership Connection"

And "Come into My House" by Queen Latifah (1989) @0:33

Which samples Funkadelic's "One Nation Under a Groove" (1978) @0:55

Clinton has even collaborated directly with hip-hop artists, like in his track with Ice Cube "Bop Gun" (1993)

And George Clinton at the tender age of 77 is still touring and performing:

Music under the direction of Clinton has been massively influential to hip-hop, r&b, and all of the funk that came after him. Clinton, with his far-out aesthetic and unwillingness to cater his music to a white audience, was and is a symbol of aesthetic unapologetic blackness in an era of increasingly commodified and filtered music. His music brought people to other planets in the 70s and became the soundtrack of the streets as it was sampled in the 80s and 90s in hip-hop.

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