February 3, 2011

D.N.A. Feat Suzanne Vega - "Tom's Diner"

A song that I recently came across while listening to some late night radio really peaked my interest for some reason. I later found out that the song I'd stumbled across, Tom's Diner by DNA feat. Suzanne Vega, is a song that will have a distinctive sound to a lot of people due to the amount it's been used since its release in 1990. The baseline by Suzanne Vega is the most noticeable recycled piece, as her combination of notes sets a serene mood and strong setting for any song to take place.

Suzanne's voice in the track is so soft it's almost not there, but it still manages to somehow carry the song confidently. When she recorded this originally, her pitch was set so well that when high frequency speakers were being developed the technicians needed to set it with a perfect note sequence, and when he heard the a cappella original of this song down the hall he knew it would work. Later because of this, developers used Tom's Diner to calibrate the file system we know as MP3, as other songs wouldn't give true enough results to tweak the notes to. The woman in the song speaks about her basic interaction at an unnamed diner, simply a story about nothing. In the same light, Seinfield took the exact same Tom's Diner a few years later and put it into their story about nothing. This song gets the rest of it's history from the artists who have sampled from it since being released; 2Pac, Lil Kim, Felt, B-Real (Cypress Hill) and probably most recognizably in Drake's I Get Money. Even after finding all of this work the original is still my favourite, but the ripples of it's impact are definitely still worth checking out. Here's the classic version, as well as my two top samples of the song.

D.N.A. Feat. Suzanne Vega - Tom's Diner (Remix)

B-Real - Don't You Dare Laugh (Sample)

Drake Feat. Kevin Cossom - I Get Money (Sample)

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