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happy 100th birthday, ella fitzgerald // april 25, 1917 - june 15, 1996 // “just don’t give up trying to do what you really want to do. where there is love and inspiration, I don’t think you can go wrong”

“The best way to start any musical evening is with [Ella]. It don’t get better than this.” Frank Sinatra

“Man, woman or child, Ella is the greatest of them all.” Bing Crosby

“Ella’s amazing! My daughter says that every time she makes a mistake, it becomes a hit record.” Lucille Ball

“It is so much fun to sing with Ella. It is so nice to sing with someone who does more than make a pretty noise.” Jo Stafford

“If you want to learn how to sing, listen to Ella Fitzgerald.” Vincent Minnelli

“The one radio voice that I listened to above others belonged to Ella Fitzgerald. There was a quality to her voice that fascinated me, and I’d sing along with her, trying to catch the subtle ways she shaded her voice, the casual yet clean way she sang the words.” Doris Day

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Why do hip-hop producers gravitate toward jazz samples? For a mood, for sonic timbre, for a unique rhythmic component. Swing is a precursor to the boom-bap. “If you’re a hip-hop producer that wants a lot of melodic stuff happening,” pianist Robert Glasper says, “you’re probably going to go to jazz first.”

Glasper has lived in an area of overlap between jazz and hip-hop for more than two decades — and you can hear it in his piano playing, which often drifts into cyclical rhythms akin to a beat-maker’s loops. It’s all one and the same to Glasper: recasting the music of Miles Davis for an R&B audience or rocking live shows with Q-Tip; playing acoustic jazz with his trio or streamlined soul with his Grammy-winning Robert Glasper Experiment.

In this short documentary video, Glasper identifies three jazz samples, from tracks by Ahmad Jamal and Herbie Hancock, that have served as source material for famed hip-hop producers J Dilla and Pete Rock.

‘Jazz Is The Mother Of Hip-Hop’: How Sampling Connects Genres