Is Doja Cat The Queen of Samples?

Famous rapper and pop artist Doja Cat has released a plethora of award-winning music in her career. Since signing on with RCA Records in 2014, she has produced hit after hit while experimenting with new ways to captivate her growing audience. A key aspect of Doja Cat’s most recognizable music includes her use of sampling well-known tracks. While some samples are more recognizable than others, Doja Cat never fails to take her inspiration and turn it into something completely new. Let’s walk through her extensive history of samples!

“No Police” Samples “We Can’t Be Friends”

The beginning melody that plays throughout Doja Cat’s “No Police” is a direct sample from Dream Koala’s “We Can’t Be Friends.” The opening beat creates a calm atmosphere, paired with Doja Cat’s lyrics to create an authentic sound for her first studio album. The Purr! Album released in 2014 when Doja Cat started finding her style through artists she admired. Earlier, Dream Koala released their ZULUZULU album in 2012. There, it included their hit “We Can’t Be Friends” that kickstarted their music career. Their work was also sampled by artists Mick Jennings, Kaash Paige, and Fabolous.

“Fancy” Samples “Canon in D Major”

Another example of Doja Cat using a sample to begin a song is in her 2018 hit “Fancy.” The track begins with a slowed version of Johann Pachelbel’s “Canon in D Major.” Then, it fades into the steady beat and chorus performed by Doja Cat. Other musicians such as Maroon 5 and Vitamin C have used the same sample. However, Doja Cat adds her twist of the slowed and reverbed version to combine the 1680 classic to the modern music scene. The 2018 Amala album, which includes “Fancy” alongside other famous singles, released alongside Doja’s rise to fame from her hit single “MOO!!!”

“MOOO!” Samples “Polka Dots and Moonbeams”

The 2018 classic “MOO!!” is arguably the song that turned heads and heightened Doja Cat’s career. What’s most interesting about the song is the number of samples and references used throughout the track. Subtly, the same chords used in Wes Montgomery’s “Polka Dots and Moonbeams” can be heard in the background during the entire song. Released in 1960, the soothing jazz sound has also been used by Joji in “Thom” released in 2015.

Aside from the instrumentals of “MOO!!!” Doja Cat’s references throughout the song highlight her genius as a lyricist. Using different play on words about cows, Doja Cat pays ode to music artists and songs alike.

For instance, the lines from Kelis’s chorus in “Milkshake” is used. Later, Doja Cat also lists off different dairy products, one of them being cream. This is a reference to Wu-Tang Clan’s 1993 “C.R.E.A.M.” that is heavy sampled track in modern hip-hop and rap music. In the end, Doja Cat also uses the famous “move, bitch, get out the way” line from Ludacris’s “Move Bitch.” Instead of saying “get out the way,” the rapper says “get out my hay” to stick with the theme.

“Freak” Samples “Put Your Head on My Shoulder”

The ABC-Paramount classic “Put Your Head On My Shoulder” has been sampled countless times. For Doja Cat, her use of the 1959 love song steers the direction of her single “Freak.” Using the slowed tempo and prominent sound of the 1950s, combined with her fast-paced rap lyrics about modern love creates a timeless classic. The song has made its rounds on social media. On TikTok, “Freak” was used for the ongoing Silhouette Challenge that sparked up in late 2020.

“Streets” Samples “Streets is Callin’”

To create a strong opening and chorus, Doja Cat turned to B2K when creating “Streets.” Apart of her Hot Pink album in 2019, the song samples “Streets is Callin’.” The song is a part of the motion picture’s You Got Served soundtrack. Doja Cat is so far the only artist to have sampled the song. By adding her own flare, she created a deep and alluring mood to the song. “Streets” has also made its way around on TikTok. It is famously known for being used as a popular sound for transition videos.

“Vegas” Samples “Hound Dog”

With the upcoming release of Elvis, Doja Cat worked on her song “Vegas” for the film’s soundtrack. Instead of using Elvis Presley’s version of “Hound Dog,” Doja Cat decided to go straight for the source. Big Mama Thornton released the original “Hound Dog” in 1953. It was later covered by Freddie Bell and the Bellboys in 1955 and Eric Clapton in 1989. Its most well-known cover was by Elvis Presley in 1956. For the sample, Doja Cat used Thornton’s famous “you ain’t nothing but a hound dog” line. “Vegas” has already been making its rounds online in thrill for the upcoming biopic set to release June 23rd!

Whether it’s a new rendition on an old classic or something totally orginally, we love to see Doja shine. I wonder what she may sample next? Any guesses?

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