In one of the more unusual bits of "sampling" on a rap CD, the new Beastie Boys album, "Hello Nasty," contains a passage from Stephen Sondheim's 1969 musical Company.
Released July 14, "Hello Nasty" includes one track, "Electrify," that samples the opening vamp of the opening number, as heard on the original cast album of Company. The Beatie Boys song, a zen rumination on finding inner peace, contains the refrain, "Can I get a witness to testify/Open your eyes/Realize/Electrify."
Sondheim's show is the story of a single man who observes the marriages of all the people in his circle of friends, and decides that being in an imperfect relationship is better than being alone.
In "sampling," a recording artist uses a musical passage from another, often unrelated, recording as the rhythmic underpinning of a rap.
The Beastie Boys first came to popularity in the mid-eighties with their smash hit, "You Gotta Fight For Your Right". Although musicals are a far stretch from being popular in the sampling world, this isn't the Beasties only connection with the theatre world. One of the Beastie Boys, Adam Horowitz, is the son of playwright Israel Horowitz (The Widow's Blind Date, Indian Wants the Bronx). -- By Sean McGrath
and Robert Viagas