Polow Da Don’s Apparent GarageBand Beatjack

Some of these bloggers calling foul on Polow Da Don for essentially jacking a preset from Apple’s Garage Band are total idiots. What’s more, few of them know anything about actually producing, so I just think they should take a seat on the sidelines.

Sure, it sounds like he ripped a few loops for the new Usher track “Make Love Up Up In The Club.” Big deal. (I believe Rihanna’s “Umbrella” is a Garageband loop too).

The only thing you should be bitching about is the fact that you were sitting at home trying to concoct some Mozart-type melody while your hit record was sitting right on your hard drive. You just had to copy and paste it together.

My understanding is that the loops in garageband and most of these other programs are available for use, without needing a license. That’s dope, it’s like free hit records waiting to be made, and you don’t have to clear anything.

I know the common argument would be that it takes no creativity. And you’re right, it doesn’t.

But how is copying and pasting a few loops from Garageband any different from sampling the groove from some classic record, laying some drums behind it and calling it your own?

Same difference.

Right or wrong?

  • http://stuntingonprose.com J. Burnett

    the only person who could be mad about this is usher who probably spent 100K+ on the track when he could’ve had some nerd w/a speech impediment do it for a stash of nudie flixx

    • Shawty J

      I doubt Polow is in the 100K range right now, probably in 50-75 K, but still I know you mean.

    • http://www.myspace/illcampsc RIGID

      What ever happened to the official producers
      that program their own drums?

  • http://hiphoponmymind.blogspot.com DJ Daddy Mack

    People need to stop bitching.

  • Dr. Colossus

    “But how is copying and pasting a few loops from Garageband any different from sampling the groove from some classic record, laying some drums behind it and calling it your own?”

    Yeah, neither takes any talent…. No wonder why no one buys music anymore.

    • DJ NOFS

      Good Point

    • TekNYk

      well dat shows how much u know bout beats. As a producer who both composes and samples i have 2 say sampling is alot more creative if ur actually chopping. and the fact that neither takes talent…. id like 2 c u make a platnium sellin beat.

      P.S. cutting n pastin is rong. chopping is a must

      • Dr. Colossus

        I’d like to see you spell properly….

        Why is aales always how people judge the quality of rap music? The Macarena was huge is that better than Polow’s (err Garage band’s) music?

        • Dr. Colossus

          Yes I see the irony! ^

  • ack

    you hella dumb

    • Jerod

      That’s funny as hell ^^

  • ejiro

    wow! now noone shud get mad or anything like that look its not the software is the matter..but actually using it ,it takes skill and a good ear to come up with something like that i know someone that has a fruity loops 7 and still cant drop a good beat but you reading this cud make up something worth billboard worthy so its not bad at all…only for usher though!lol

  • http://www.therezidue.com Maurice Garland

    i mean…the dude just being resourceful…

    and shied…i dont think buddy gave U$her the playa price on the beat…100k easy.

  • Trey Stone

    the whole “how much talent does sampling take” debate is part of the reason i respect Timbaland and (pre-slight falloff) The Neptunes’ work a lot. when you’re making beats that’re as good if not better than some of the more sample-happy big-name guys you gotta be doing something right. i think the “good ear” defense of good sample-driven producers has some merits, and ‘course chopping/rearranging takes more talent than just looping, but there’s something to be said for original compositions.

    Timbo’s assorted Middle Eastern sampling/videogame beat-jacking aside.

    though at the same time i wouldn’t trade in all the great Kanye/Just Blaze material i own for, say, the “original” synth stylings of Lil’ Jon and Scott Storch (with a few exceptions)

  • http://Hotblock.com/blog Kirk

    A hit’s a hit. Tell’em. If the people like it then it’s basically official. Plus, almost anything Usher gets on will be a smash record. So, if he wants to pay 50 thousand for a beat from a established producer when he can pay five thousand for one from a new producer and get the same amount of spins and sales that’s his preference.

  • http://www.myspace.com/alsween AlSween

    atleast with a sample cd you buy it and look through it. or if you digging through vinyl you actually buy it and look for it. garage band just comes with the computer. is it wrong to use a straight loop from garage band and add timbaland drums? no there’s nothing illegal about it but there is a moral and ethical problem with it. personally i don’t care though. i think the song is corny.

  • wax

    actually, whats worse is all this syth bullshit in hip pop right now is just recyled shit from happy hardcore and gabber records from the early 90s UK and Netherlands dance scene, if you really want to “dig”

    • http://www.cocaineblunts.com/ noz

      Nah they are just jacking pop trance.

      I am sadly still waiting for 200 BPM gabber rapps.

  • http://www.plasticsquirtguns.blogspot.com thoreauly77

    i see no difference; in fact, i don’t think there is any ethical issue either (and “moral” is more than a stretch in this context). the point is that all music, even the most seemingly original, borrows from it’s contemporaries and predecessors. when it does so in a unique way that sounds fresh, people listen. if polow used a “garageband” beat and made it fresh (and made some money), more power to him.

  • connor

    Polow has put together some wack beats in his day (uh London Bridge anyone?) but this is pretty much the wackest. It doesn’t really matter how he made it, it still fucking sucks.

    Now actually I like Polow a lot, and I think he does interesting and innovative work a fair proportion of the time. I don’t have a problem with him using whatever loops he found wherever; what I have a problem with is this is a garageband beat that SOUNDS garageband.

    I’m going to go out on a limb and say that he didn’t put together Let’s Get this Paper with some OEM shit such as this.

  • bbbones

    London Bridge was a banging beat, just cant stand fergus

  • EReal

    Crank dat Soulja Boy! LMAO. Ole fruity loops ass producers.

  • Eman

    Man I could have sworn producers been doing that for awhile especially because its so easy I man Gb comes with your mac and since 95% of producers use macs why would they not check it out and try to jack something outta it.

  • Cinsere

    Wrong.

    There’s an art to digging for records, listening to them with painstaking attention to details, and having an ear for what could be a dope loop or sound effect, that can be anywhere from 8 bars down to like half-a-bar. Not to mention chopping and flipping said samples. Having the loop just handed to you is the equivalent of having a ghostwriter feed you your rhymes. There’s no respect or honor in that.

    But such is hip hop in 2008. What else is new?

    • Trey Stone

      but you’re still basically taking something else that was good/great in the first place (if you’ve got a good ear anyway,) which really increases your chances of the beat being good in large part cuz of the person originally responsible for it. even if you make it knock more with added drums/speed it up/whatever.

      chopping it up and reimagining the sample’s different, but i still would separate it from completely composing your own shit

      • Cinsere

        I feel you. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve long said there should be more live instrumentation in hip hop. It’s why The Roots are one of my favorite groups, and why I enjoy shows with live bands rather than a DJ playing the tracks. That being said (and maybe it’s because I grew up in the Premo/Pete Rock/Rza era), there’s a feeling that I can’t quite explain when I hear a producer take a short snippet of a record, no longer than a seemingly insignificant 2 seconds of the original composition, and reworking it into something so fresh you can’t help but nod your head in affirmation. Premo’s “Mass Appeal” beat is a prime example. Listen to Vic Juris, “Horizon Drive” and you’ll be like “holy SHIT, how the HELL did he catch that and flip it the way he did?!” Or how Havoc turned that soulful Willie Hutch track into something dark and sinister with “Drop a Gem.” Of course it’s not the same as creating original compositions, but it surely takes more talent and vision than snatching some pre-rendered shit straight out of a free computer program.

        • Dr. Colossus

          I think the difference between the 80′s and early 90′s is that no one was calling rap producers musical geniuses. It was more about how clever you could be with your sample and sound, now people think that these guys are like The Beatles or Holland-Dozier-Holland where all they do is take some music that someone else made and have someone sing or rap over it and proclaim that they are great producers/writers.

  • Trevor

    True speech.

  • DRE

    so i guess none you heard T-pain, Fall out Boy, using garageband/Logic pro for the majority of there work, i don’t hear any one bitch’n at them, T-Pain’s first few singles came straight from garageband’s Apple Loops(i’m sprung, I’m in luv wit a stripper). i don’t want to sound like a jerk or anything but i used that exact same loop Polow used months ago, Polow just put it out before me!!! Besides i think y’all r a bunch a HATERS, cause u don’t think of it first.

  • Cinsere

    I feel you. Don’t get me wrong, I’ve long said there should be more live instrumentation in hip hop. It’s why The Roots are one of my favorite groups, and why I enjoy shows with live bands rather than a DJ playing the tracks. That being said (and maybe it’s because I grew up in the Premo/Pete Rock/Rza era), there’s a feeling that I can’t quite explain when I hear a producer take a short snippet of a record, no longer than a seemingly insignificant 2 seconds of the original composition, and reworking it into something so fresh you can’t help but nod your head in affirmation. Premo’s “Mass Appeal” beat is a prime example. Listen to Vic Juris, “Horizon Drive” and you’ll be like “holy SHIT, how the HELL did he catch that and flip it the way he did?!” Or how Havoc turned that soulful Willie Hutch track into something dark and sinister with “Drop a Gem.” Of course it’s not the same as creating original compositions, but it surely takes more talent and vision than snatching some pre-rendered shit straight out of a free computer program.

  • Pat

    The difference between taking a sample from a record and jacking Garageband loops is that you have to pay licensing fees for sampling records.
    Plus, it is considered an art to flip a good sample. That’s some weak, Puffy type shit to just jack a 4 or 8 bar loop.

  • http://myspace.com/triaginbeatz TRI

    I mean lets be real about it its the worng thing too do sand i guess i feel this way bcause i do not sample….records etc…it is just a really bad look for the game when moves like this our made i am a big fan of polow ……but against what he did in this situation……get back behind your miko and touch some keys

  • http://incilin.blogpspot.com Incilin

    Although I agree with you in essence, you kinda make the whole art of producing and sampling sound like it aint shit. As if RZA or Dilla and Kayne are just “copying and pasting” classics to make amazing music. Which I know wasn’t your intention since it’s pretty much what your work revolves around and it’s something I’m sure you have a lot of respect for.

  • http://www.soundclick.com/acefadal Ace Fadal

    I was talking to El-P and Chin Chin his keyboardist. He said they use everything. EVERYTHING.

    If it sounds good I’ll listen to it. I don’t care if you are banging pots and pans together.

    I guess kids playing 5 gallon tubs on the street corners, are probably not considered a percussionist, but I promise can’t none of you match there skills with the same bucket!

    shut up already.

    My boy made a beat called barbershop quintet. A snare, a kick, and a bass line. You know what they used to drive the main melody? An electric hair razor transposed in four different key.

    peep em at myspace. Koncrete Kidz, KCMO

  • Black Ice

    Producers been using samples since hip hop started. But even when they do make live beats they just hitting buttons on synthesizers until it sounds good to them. I dont see the talent in doing that either. I mean if i dedicated my life to making beats and i could have all day to do it i probably could be the next timbaland too. Its funny people talk about polow when he didn’t even sample a old song like folk from new yourk

  • http://www.mceyetel.com Eyetel

    It’s not what you have or where you got it from but how you flip it & use it. It doesn’t matter if he dug in a dirty (_|_) crate & found it, off of a free or paid for sample cd or gb. If you can’t make something that you or the general public likes then it sucks (_|_)

  • http://www.soundclick.com/emenententertainment Grenade

    As a Producer, I agree with the fact that using a pre-sampled loop straight out of a program can be quite un-creative, but if you can make it hot, all the power to you. Personally, I just don’t feel right doing so, it’s not challenging enough.

    Sampling for beats is a completely different realm from fully composing your own beat. I’ve been making beats for about 4 years and my approach when I make a sampled beat is completely different then a fully composed beat. It actually involves a lot of talent, such as, selecting song, chopping loop, removing high/low frequency’s, layering drums, making basslines, adding melodies, exct… So whoever says sampling for a beat is easy, think of those factors I just stated.

  • http://www.soundclick.com/emenententertainment Grenade

    As a Producer, I agree with the fact that using a pre-sampled loop straight out of a program can be quite un-creative, but if you can make it hot, all the power to you. Personally, I just don’t feel right doing so, it’s not challenging enough.

    Sampling for beats is a completely different realm from fully composing your own beat. I’ve been making beats for about 4 years and my approach when I make a sampled beat is completely different then a fully composed beat. It actually involves a lot of talent, such as, selecting song, chopping loop, removing high/low frequency’s, layering drums, making basslines, adding melodies, exct… So whoever says sampling for a beat is easy, think of those factors I just stated.

  • booga man

    Bullshit,… That shit is fucked up period. I am a producer that spends hours with my equipment and would never sell a bum this shit let alone usher. As a producer who have to value your craft period…. I have used loops but you use Ableton and whatever to chop em and make them yours period. Polow has fell off… If you want a quick score in the industry get Garage Band.. If you want to last be original an value your image and craft .. Only the untalented producer supports this.. I wonder if the Neptunes,,, Timbaland.. Will.i.am ever did this.. NOT./ They have skills… Ont fall for this shit.. Ge the skill and you never will suffer through this shit.

  • http://www.music.blackplanet.com/bigmilt Big Milt

    I’ve made beats on GarageBand using loops also. I see nothing wrong with Polow using that program’s preset loops, especially when they’re royalty free. I know Rockwilder is up on GarageBand too-he said so in an earlier article. Myself, I’m more into Reason 3, but for looping & chopping, GarageBand (& Audacity) is a winner.

  • Romare Basquiat

    “Rap is an art you can’t own no loops,
    It’s how you hook em up and the rhyme style troop!” Guru cicra 1992… At its best our culture is about expression and arriving at that point by any means necessary… Presets are no excluded in that ideology…

  • http://www.soundclick.com/emenententertainment Grenade

    “I wonder if the Neptunes,,, Timbaland.. Will.i.am ever did this..” From:”booga man”

    As far as Timbaland goes, go to youtube.com and search: Timbaland Beat Jacking. Check out some of those videos…I’m not saying there valid, but check them out.

    As far as supporting Polow Da Don on this situation, I don’t.

  • http://www.myspace.com/frizzodetroit Frizzo

    There was a similar situation in my hood with some dude who got caught “jackin’ for presets” and fools were hatin on him because he claimed the beat as his own. I personally don’t sample and I refuse to because I think it shows a lack of creativity and originality.

  • P-Matik

    Rihanna’s “Umbrella” is a GarageBand “beatjack” too.

  • http://kingtime.ru/ KingTime

    большое спасибо!Взяла себе тоже-пригодится.

  • KGams

    Look…..If it was that easy to make , why the hell didn’t anyone else come up with it. He still had to sample the sounds and pick which loops fit together. THe song was a hit because he picked that specific sound that made people say wow. Its not far from sampling and there is over 2,000 diff sounds per soft pack!(4-6packs) So you go search and find three out of 2,000 and see how easy it is!

    • tdf

      exactly my point!!!!!!!

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  • tdf

    creativity is in the palm of your hand, a touch of the mental and a connection into the spiritual. If cutting and pasting was something that everyone could do, then anybody and everybody would have a hit record whenever they felt like it. It doesn’t work that way, it always looks and sounds easy from an outside prospective. creativity comes in many different forms, and how you come up with it can’t be tainted because somebody came up with a better way to do it then you. Inspiration is everywhere if we just would allow it to take over, anybody can’t just do it TRUST ME!!! i’ve heard a lot of local and upcoming producers try to just cut and paste…whole time thinking that they were going to make hits. If its not in you then you can’t pull it out of you, its a God given gift to create sound no matter what instrumental you use.