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Programs That Make Beats
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Programs That Make Beats

DJ Kool Herc

It was 1972 and hot as heck in the Bronx. Down the street you could hear the distant throb of a hard funk bass mixed with the sounds of people enjoying a block party.

Every now and then a DJ's smooth voice would call out to the dancers, referring to them as his b-boys and b-girls. His calls had a cool rhythm and cadence that blended with the music perfectly.

If you listened carefully, you would have noticed something strange. On James Brown's "Give It Up Or Turn It Loose" the instrumental break would play twice as long as it should have. That was because Clive Campbell had perfected a way to double the length of the break beat by using two turntables.

When the break beat was just coming to a close, Clive would start the a second copy of the record that was cued up to the beginning of the same break beat. He did it so well that you couldn't hear the transition...you just danced all the harder.

This Was The Birth Of Hip Hop Music And Programs That Make Beats

It would be a while yet before programs to make beats became available for everyone. In fact, at this time Clive who went by the name DJ Kool Herc was the only program that made beats.

It is rather interesting that the next major player in the evolution in beat making technology was a German computer geek named Karsten Obarski. He developed computer games in the 1980's and created a program called the Ultimate Sound Tracker which was the first computer program to play back audio sound samples in a user created sequence.

To a computer world that was use to only beeps and blips for sound, this software blew many minds and even though Karsten Obarski was not remotely interested in hip hop music, his software was meant for it.

Digital Beat Making Is Born

Hip Hop music by its nature is composed of taking sound samples from other people's music and mixing them together in different sequences. DJ Kool Herc set that standard for that when he bought two turntables and a guitar amplifier and begin combining hard funk beat breaks to make his dancers happier.

With Karsten's software, it was no longer a matter of have multiple turntables and quick reflexes, you could now combine any number of samples together to create a brand new sound. Since most of these tracks were for dancing and rapping, they became known as beats.

Programs That Make Beats

Programs that make beats have advanced so far that you can now get a complete beat making studio for yourself for so cheap that it cost less than a night out for two.

Unlike Karsten's primitive program these programs that make beats use 44.1 kHz, 16 bit, stereo audio files which are industry standard. Karsten's used 8 bit mono sound files.

The Modern Breed Of Programs That Make Beat

The current crop of programs that make beats owes a lot to Karsten and DJ Kool Herc and they also keep hip hop true to its beginnings as a populist type of music which anyone can create. All it takes is a computer and one of the programs that makes beats and you are on your way to being the next DJ Kool Herc.


Street Talk

Amazing man! This is really a great piece of writing. I have read this article carefully. so keep it up man. We are looking forward. Thanks. dubturbo

Reply
  about 8 years ago

This is an interesting short history of Hip Hop...

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  about 8 years ago
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