Marvin Gaye - Here My Dear

[Ed. Note: As of Jan. 30, 2014, this piece has been updated with more songs that sample Marvin Gaye, including the recent mash-up of featuring Yassiin Bey  called "Inner City Travelin' Man." Enjoy.]

"I have aspirations to be Marvin Gaye in the back of my head." Drake said those words in an interview with MTV back in September, once again establishing that his musical ambitions can't be contained to the rap world. In June, the Canadian rapper/singer revealed to GQ that his then in production new album would be heavily influenced by Gaye's 1978 record Here, My Dear, a wounded and emotionally draining collection of songs about a fractured relationship. Now that Drake's record, Nothing Was The Same, is here, audiences and critics are free to assess whether his comparison was justified, but the larger question remains: Why is Here, My Dear still such a relevant record?

While Here, My Dear doesn't have the same canonical status of other Gaye records like What's Going On? and Let's Get It On, it has a strong reputation as an insular, dark and proudly weird album, an uncompromising record made by an artist in turmoil. With its combination of soul, jazz and disco, it's an R&B album that refuses to play by the rules of a particular style, something a genre-blending artist like Drake would be drawn to. And Drake's not the only one: Former G-Unit rapper Young Buck recently released "Rage," his first new song since serving an 18-month prison sentence, and it samples Here, My Dear stand-out "Anger."

But Drake and Young Buck are hardly the first hip-hop artists to draw from the album's smoky, eccentric aesthetic. Like many other Gaye records, the album has been a steady source of inspiration for crate-digging producers and rappers with an ear for adventurous sounds. To dig deeper into Marvin Gaye's profound impact on hip-hop, XXL has selected 12 songs that sample Gaye's Here, My Dear. Pour yourself a glass of wine, stop texting your ex and join us as we take a look at the album's enduring (and growing) hip-hop legacy. --Dan Jackson

"Regrets" Reks
Sample: "Here, My Dear"
Massachusetts rapper Reks flips album opener "Here, My Dear" for this sweet and reflective track off his 2012 record Straight, No Chaser, which was entirely produced by East Coast innovator Statik Selektah. This won't be Selektah's only appearance on this list: The producer obviously has a thing for Here, My Dear.

"Pretty Little Thing" Styles P
Sample: "I Met A Little Girl"
Here The LOX rapper and June Summers turn Gaye's beautiful "I Meat A Little Girl" into a moving and earnest tribute to the woman he loves. Of course, the lyrical content is a little more in-your-face than what was allowed in Gaye's time. "You're my close friend/And when I need to penetrate you always let the ghost in." That does sound like a very close friend.

"Caught Up In My Gunplay" Spice 1
Sample: "Anger"
Like Young Buck, Spice 1 was undoubtedly attracted to the pain and anguish expressed by Gaye's vocal delivery on "Anger," particularly the way he sings "Raaaaaaaage," sounding both pissed off and utterly lost. Here the West Coast gangsta rapper uses Gaye's pain to craft a tough-talking track about the perils of life on the street.

"Sippin' On Some Syrup" Three 6 Mafia
Sample: "Is That Enough"
The smooth stylings of Marvin Gaye and the often pummeling music of Three 6 Mafia may not appear similar on the surface, but if you dig deeper they've got more in common than you'd think: Both turn pain into catharsis, both delve into the darker side of humanity, and both have a taste for destructive substances. When The Smoke Clears: Sixty 6, Sixty 1 classic "Sippin' On Some Syrup" draws from a particularly alien-sounding passage of "Is That Enough," taking you on a hallucinatory journey.

"Episode XVI" Madlib
Sample: "Time To Get It Together"
Madlib is known for unearthing eccentric samples, so it makes sense that he'd have an intimate relationship with Here, My Dear. This particularly powerful bit of warped sound collage is drawn from the Madlib Medicine Show, a 13-track collection filled with some of the producer's most out there and experimental work.

"Midnight Hoes" Kingpin Skinny Pimp
Sample: "Time To Get It Together"
More than any other track on Here, My Dear, "Time To Get It Together" has been an endless inspiration to rappers and producers. Over 4 minutes, Gaye weaves a tapestry of squelching synths, psychedelic guitars and steady funk drums that begs to be picked apart and dissected by discerning listeners. One time Hypnotize Minds label signee Kingpin Skinny Pimp was one of the many artists to be drawn in by the song's other-worldly textures.

"Time" Hi-Tek Featuring Talib Kweli And Dion
Sample: "Time To Get It Together"
Black Star affiliated producer Hi-Tek flips "Time To Get It Together" for this spacey track that combines old school samples with clever wordplay. Talib Kweli and Dion stop by to get in on the earnest philosophizing on what time is exactly—they don't figure it all out by the song's end, but they pose some provocative questions along the way.

"Time" Fel Sweetenberg
Sample: "Time To Get It Together"
New Jersey/Philadelphia rapper Fel Sweetenberg also grabs "Time To Get It Together" for his track "Time," which finds the rapper getting nostalgic about middle school romances while touching on darker memories about hospital beds and infidelity too. A well-placed Gaye sample has a tendency to bring out both the dark and the light in a rapper.

"Come Around" Statik Selektah Featuring Termanology And Royce da 59
Sample: "Sparrow"
Statik Selektah adds some much appreciated scratches to Here, My Dear's soft and mournful "Sparrow," injecting a bit of maniacal energy into the sample. Also, this track is notable for featuring the following gem of a fart-joke from Royce da 59: "Excuse the psychology like Dr. Phil fartin."

"Piss" Necro
Sample: "Anna's Song"
"Anna's Song" is in many ways the emotional high-point of Here, My Dear, a track that directly focuses on Gaye's divorce from Anna Gordy Gaye, the sister of Motown founder Berry Gordy and the co-writer of two tracks on What's Going On. So, of course, Necro flips it for a song called "Piss." Classy.

"Light Years" Theophilus London
Sample: "A Funky Space Reincarnation"
Genre-bending rapper and singer Theophilus London grabs Gaye's groovy bit of funk-futurism for a similarly sweet-talking track. "I think holiday sweaters/Somehow just make the holiday better," raps London at one point, and one can assume that's the type of sentiment Marvin could get behind.

"Don't Trust Em" Gangsta Blac
Sample: "Falling In Love Again"
I wasn't kidding about the Three 6 Mafia connection. On Can It Be?, the 1995 album from one time Mafia associate Gangsta Blac, producers Juicy J and DJ Paul flip the joyful horns of "Falling In Love Again" for a banging tale of paranoia and distrust.

"Listen Baby" Fat Joe
Sample: "Ain't No Mountain High Enough"

Joey shows love to Marvin Gaye and Tammi Terrell's superb duet.

"Let’s Go” -Juelz Santana ft. Cam'ron
Sample: Let's Get It On

Dipset gives a nod to Gaye's iconic song on "Let's Go."

"1st of tha Month" Bone Thugs-n-Harmony
Sample: "Sexual Healing"

The Cleveland crew adds an interesting spin to "Sexual Healing" with "1st Of Tha Month."

"Music" Erick Sermon
Sample: "Just like Music (Music Feel The Soul)"

Erick Sermon works with a posthumous Gaye for his hit single "Music."

“Inner City Travelin’ Man”

Amerigo Gazaway combines Yasiin Bey (formerly Mos Def) and Marvin Gaye for a collaborative project called Yasiin Gaye. Using Gaye's Motown classics, Gazaway deconstructs the samples and repurposes them into new sounds. The first installment is "Inner City Travelin' Man," which weaves Bey's thoughtful lyricism with Gaye's vocals. It's amazing.