10 Times Hip-Hop Sampled A Bobby Caldwell Song
On Wednesday (March 15), it was announced that legendary singer Bobby Caldwell passed away. He was 71.
Via Twitter, Caldwell’s wife, Mary Caldwell, announced his death, revealing he died at home. "Bobby passed away here at home. I held him tight in my arms as he left us. I am forever heartbroken. Thanks to all of you for your many prayers over the years," she wrote.
Caldwell’s soulful voice and music were a favorite in hip-hop culture, often sampled by artists who created even more memorable songs out of his life’s work.
Below are 10 of our favorite instances where hip-hop sampled Bobby Caldwell. RIP.
The Notorious B.I.G. feat. 112 “Sky’s the Limit” (1997)
Producer: Clark Kent
Samples “My Flame” (1978)
One of the more memorable single's from Biggie's Life After Death album, "Sky's the Limit" was released via a triple A-side along with "Going Back to Cali" and "Kick In the Door." It was also attained certified Gold status by the RIAA.
2Pac feat. Eric Williams “Do For Love” (1997)
Producer: Soulshock & Karlin
“Do For Love,” which initially was titled "Sucka 4 Luv," was the west coast legend's second single released posthumously via his album R U Still Down? (Remember Me). Originally, it was a B-side to "Brenda's Got a Baby."
Common “The Light” (2000)
Producer: J Dilla
Samples “Open Your Eyes” (1980)
The second single from Common's classic album Like Water for Chocolate, "The Light" received a Grammy nomination and is a love letter devoted to Erykah Badu, who he was in a relationship with at the time. Produced by J Dilla (RIP) it’s one of Common’s most recognizable songs and biggest hits. It also showcases the emcee’s ability to intertwine music with his real-life experiences.
Lil Nas X “Carry On” (2018)
Samples “Carry On” (1981)
"Carry On" was actually uploaded and unofficially released five months before Lil Nas X's mega-smash "Old Town Road" and relays the distress he feels in his environment, which is in contrast to the freeing hit he became known for.
2Pac feat. Danny Boy “Heaven Ain’t Hard 2 Find” (1996)
Producer: QD III
Off of Tupac's legendary LP All Eyez On Me, “Heaven Ain’t Hard 2 Find” was originally intended for TLC's Lisa "Left Eye" Lopes. At the time, she was in an abusive relationship with NFL player Andre Rison with the song intended to be a proclamation that a life with Pac would be better than her then-current one.
Knxwledge “Kindalike.” (2019)
There's not much info about "kindalike." but the video for the song features the lyricist rapping in the front seat of his car. It's simple, similar to the song.
MURS & 9th Wonder feat. Rapper Big Pooh “Barbershop” (2006)
Producer: 9th Wonder
Samples: “Coming Down From Love” (1980)
"Barbershop" is the fourth track on the California rapper's album Murray's Revenge and employees elements of the hook and riff from Caldwell's "Coming Down from Love." It's also quite close to a Little Brother song, featuring 2/3 of the group's members.
Kendrick Lamar feat. BJ the Chicago Kid “R.O.T.C. (Interlude)” (2010)
Producer: Jairus “J-Mo” Mozee
“R.O.T.C. (Interlude)” relays K Dot's musings about life and the music industry during an uneventful June morning. Ironically, the song also has the hip-hop legend questioning whether he should continue his career in music or turn to the streets instead. I think we know the answer to that one.
Kool G Rap “Blowin’ Up in the World” (1995)
Samples: “What You Won’t Do for Love” (1978)
“Blowin’ Up in the World” is the seventh song on G Rap's solo album 4,5,6 and recalls the come-up he had on his 1989 smash hit with DJ Polo for "Road to the Riches."
Little Brother “Sittin Alone” (2019)
One of the newer Little Brother tracks out, "Sittin Alone" is the eleventh song on the North Carolina group's newest album May the Lord Watch. On the cut, the trio expresses how growing up affected their views of the music industry through both the club and party scenes.