Wednesday, 20 March 2013

Dope Skillz - 6 Million Ways

Dope Skillz - 6 Million Ways (Frontline, 1995)

The phrase "six million ways to die" appears in countless hip-hop tracks. It's origin is Cutty Ranks' dancehall hit 'A Who Say Me Done' from 1992 which opens with "Six million ways to die, choose one heh heh" which was then sampled in 'Six Million Ways To Die' by Funkmaster Flex & 9 Double M and 'Serial Killa' by Snoop Dogg in 1993. It has since become a staple of hip-hop lyrics, from Big Daddy Kane and Mos Def to more recent material from Emanon and Evidence, and has also appeared in several drum'n'bass records.

One of the best known examples is '6 Million Ways' by Dope Skillz AKA DJ Zinc which samples Redman's "Six million ways to die, so I chose" lyric from his Method Man collab 'How High', a track Zinc also samples on his 'Ready Or Not' remix. In the intro this lyric is laid over a g funk-ish synth along with drums using the 'Hot Pants' and 'Cold Sweat' breaks and a live bassline sampled from New Birth's 'Ain't No Change'. Zinc also samples further lines from 'How High', Redman's "(Fuck) the billboard, I'm a bullet on my block" and just before the drop, a timestretched "10, 9, 8, 7..." from Method Man. The track has a massive floorshaking bassline and later adds the 'Amen' break to the mix along with the whole Method Man line ("... 6, 5, 4, / 3, 2, Murder 1 lyric at your door"). A typically hip-hop heavy dancefloor smasher from Zinc and one of my personal favourites in his catalogue.

Check out LoGo's excellent drum & bass mash-up of 'How High' with 'Create The Future' by Philth which is currently available to download for free.

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