One of hip-hop's most important foundations has always been the art of sampling, and few have been able to master that craft better than Kanye West. Schooled by Chicago producer, No ID, West made his name by taking the soulful roots of the Chicago music scene and chopping them up to create stunning beats of nostalgic and orchestral beauty. Though his latest work, Yeezus, turned away from those influences for the most part, one notable exception was, "Blood On The Leaves", an introspective club-banger that sampled Nina Simone's cover of the iconic, racially-charged ballad, "Strange Fruit." Because of the song's hallowed nature, though, "Leaves" has left listeners wondering what the limits in good taste are when it comes to artistic reappropriation. Andrew Ridker weighs in on the subject with a must-read essay at Guernica Mag.
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