It was truly a moment of clarity when I discovered the very sonic foundation of Jay-Z’s seminal cut “Can’t Knock The Hustle” – and it’s always been that warm subtle groove that opens the first song off his 1996 solo debut Reasonable Doubt that made this song (and, ultimately, Jay-Z’s entire career) so inescapable to me – is pulled from the 1983 slow jam “Much Too Much” by Marcus Miller. Marcus Miller’s name may not be too familiar, but he’s a behind-the-scenes legend and Grammy Award-winning musician, closely working with Miles Davis, Herbie Hancock, Luther Vandross, and David Sanborn, amongst many others, playing in the Saturday Night Live band in the late 1980s, and composing film scores since the early 1990s. Fun fact: his first four film scores were House Party, Boomerang, Above the Rim, and A Low Down Dirty Shame. Bona fide classics. Can’t knock Marcus Miller’s hustle.
Jay-Z "Can't Knock The Hustle"
Marcus Miller "Much Too Much" sample @ :10