Artist Nate Harrison produced a 20-minute video exploring the history of the "Amen Break," taken from the song "Amen, Brother" by the Winstons in 1969.  He goes onto show how this 6-second break has been used in hundred of hip hop, techno and jungle records.  He also delves into the issues of copyright and appropriation.  A couple of points caught my attention:

"Not only does the innovation within a culture grow when copyright is flexible, so does its markets and capital."


"Culture is impossible without a rich public domain."

This video is well worth its 20-minute run time.

Finally, a hat tip to Dr. Lester Spence at Johns Hopkins for bringing it to my attention on his blog.


Posted by Rob Fields

  • keets

    this is really old..

  • Fair enough. But it’s new to me. The important thing to remember is that this is how knowledge/information spreads: Somebody will be “first” and that means that everyone else will not.
    In the meantime, thanks for stopping by and commenting.