New Audio: Rhythm Scholar’s Psychedelic and Funky Take on De La Soul’s “Breakadawn.”

If you’ve come of age during hip-hop’s golden era, De La Soul holds a rather important position to you, as they released some of that period’s best and most memorable material.  Now, if you were around during that time, you’d likely remember “Breakadawn” off their 1993 release Buhloone Mindstate – and the single consists of a breezy, old school jazz sample of twinkling keyboards paired with skittering percussion that came from combining Michael Jackson’s “I Can’t Help it” and Smokey Robinson’s “Quiet Storm” and pairing it with skittering percussion and boom-bap drums. Sonically, it revealed that the trio had matured and that hip-hop had matured to include an ever-expanding sonic palate and a deeper thematic depth. At this point, there were a greater number of artists, who were following their eccentric muses. 

Interestingly, De La Soul is working on a new full-length album – an album which they’re crowdsourcing. And in anticipation of their new effort, the extremely prolific DJ and producer Rhythm Scholar remixed and mashed up “Breakadawn” with samples from Smokey Robinson (as per the original song), The Brand New Heavies, Steely Dan, The Bar-Kays, Skull Snaps and Barry White while retaining the vocal track. Interestingly, the remix maintains the original’s breezy, trippy feel but pushes the tempo up with a period specific funk, straight from the 70s.