Sampling 101: Michael Jackson – Lady in My Life

Who Sampled It Best ?

Sampling 101:

Michael Jackson – The Lady In My Life

Thriller is one of the most iconic albums in history.  The immortal Michael Jackson released this bomb in 1982 and damn near every song from the album was a number 1 single.  One of my favs is the beautiful “Lady of My Life”.  Hip-Hop & R&B would soon take notice of this timeless ballad and began sampling with varying results. Let’s check some of them out.

Michael Jackson  – The Lady In My Life

Who Sampled It Best ?

1. LL Cool J – Hey Lover

After LL Cool J’s rough talking album, 14 Shots to the Dome, he returned in 1995 concentrating on his seductive, romantic side on the Mr. Smith album. His lead single was “Hey Lover”. You know this song. As a matter of fact, my grandmother knows this love at first sight tale. I think I even caught her rhyming.

Tonguin’ you down with, uh, vanilla ice cream
Kissing on your thighs in the moonlight
Searchin’ your body with my tongue, girl, all night

Yuck…come on granny.

The Michael Jackson sample along with Boys II Men on the hook, in their prime help create a beautiful song that will live on until eternity.

LL Cool J – Hey Lover ft. Boyz II Men


2. Gangsta Pat – I Wanna Smoke

Gangsta Pat……Memphis underground legend.   . He was originally signed to a major label like his Tennessee brethren, 3-6 Mafia and Eightball & MJG.   Unfortunately his album didn’t blaze up charts, but Pat didn’t let that slow him down.  He starting producing his own music and quietly racked up 12 albums since 1991.  He showcased a new style on his 4th album; 1994’s Deadly Verses.  One of those singles was the hypnotic “I Wanna Smoke”.    He slowed down the classic MJ song, added those west coast shrills and had singer on the hook. This is classic! At first listen to this ode to weed, you would think Bone Thugs had a new song.   After a couple listens, you’ll be in traffic singing the hook.

I want to roll in a jeep want to smoke me a blunt
I want to get fucked up
want to smoke ; want to choke
want to get fucked up

Gangsta Pat – I Wanna Smoke

3. Trae the Truth – Swang

The years went by and a slew of rappers sampled “Lady In My Life”   Houston representer Trae dropped “Swang”  off 2005’s  Restless.  And damn, the slowed MJ sample is the perfect tapestry for both MC’s to spit.   Trae talks that Houston lifestyle ,while BIG H.A.W.K. laments his brother, SUC legend, Fat Pat.  You can feel his pain when he rhymes:


Pop my trunk for Fat Pat’s death

I would give my last breath if I could bring you back

Bring Screw back, matter fact, bring the whole crew back

Only God can do that , so Imma leave it alone.
Moving on, grooving to this soothing song
I’m cruising along

Still got a screw tape on


I’m Fat Pat’s clone, his legacy carries on

His heart beat pumps through my flesh and bone

RIP to Fat Pat and Big H.A.W.K.

Trae & Hawk – Swang

Swang” does it best

The most popular song is clearly “Hey Lover”.   Now it’s a lovely song and all, I just always thought it was like a drink with too much coke, and not enough rum.  The vibe that “Swang” captures is vintage Houston.   Even if you are from Connecticut and think screw is a some sort of  tool, once you listen to this new age classic, you will be feenin for me.

Now there were a couple other artists who sampled this timeless track. 3-6 Mafia sampled this on 1995’s “Porno Movie”.  Remember Skee-Lo?  Wishing he was taller?   He used this backdrop on “Never Crossed My Mind” off his 1995 debut.  Another Memphis representer, Gangsta Boo flowed over this sample on her song “My Ex Boyfriend”.   More recently, Omarion and Bow Wow discussed their wishes on “Need That Love”  But me answer this, whether your choice is above or not…Who Sampled It Best?

Who Sampled It Best? is a weekly column that delves into the background of sampling and Hip-Hop culture by taking a deeper look at it’s roots.

Have a suggestion? Hit us up with your favorite tracks that used the same sample and we’ll break it down.

Sampling 101: Michael Jackson – The Lady In My Life

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