[rumori] The Sample Clearance Fund: A proposal

Steev [rumori] The Sample Clearance Fund: A proposal
Wed, 26 Aug 1998 09:57:40 -0700 (PDT) (00904179460, Pine.LNX.4.02.9808260931460.19608-100000ATflotsam.detritus.net)

On Wed, 26 Aug 1998, Boster, Bob wrote:

>>what is a "musically dependant" use of a sample, and what is not.
>Yes, I'd say there is room for some kind of standard to be set about
>what qualifies as dependent. For me I would say the leverage of the
>decision rests on "using the sample for it's connotation IN THE SAME
>John O., I think. My guess is this could be categorized and defined
>relatively strictly. It would also result in the Puff Daddies paying
>and the Negativlands not (which would be a bonus, but not my goal). I
>realize this is hard to juggle, but potentially more definable and even
>more amenable to some side of the issue than a complete sample ban
>(which is what we are facing in some sense).

oh no, no sir, you're wrong about this "connotation" rule. Have you ever really listened to Puff Daddy? That song that samples "Every Breath You Take" for instance - it has a TOTALLY different connotation than that of the original - Sting's song was about a narrator gone slightly
obsessional, perhaps even stalking, his lover. The Puff Daddy track, on
the other hand, is basically a eulogy to Tupac Shakur, stressing the
"I'll be Missing You" idea - because the singer's friend is gone, he'll be missed. So one song is about pathological surveillance, another is an
expression of sadness for the dead.

In other words, in his own way, Puffy Combs is a consummate
recontextualizer. The end product might not be aesthetically pleasing to
you or me, but that's not the issue.

Again, there is ambiguity here. You could argue with me. You could say
that essentially, the connotation IS the same. But my point is, this is a
matter that laws and government agencies may have trouble deciding on, and
perhaps should not be required to, at least in a generic sense. Each case
must be judged on it's own, rather than trying to legislate some general
definition or rule. So, yes, the courts. Though even the courts make me
worried. However, given 2LiveCrew's success in a court of law (the Pretty
Woman case), maybe there's hope for that kind of ad hoc line-drawing...

However, talking about guidelines for this kind of thing strikes me as one
of the most interesting topics we could discuss here. Anyone want to try
to improve on Bob's attempt? What *should* be the distinction, or should
there even be one?

The motivation for drawing this sort of line, for me, comes from fear,
fear that once, if ever, the sampling paradigm shifts completely out of
the bag, it will just explode and become totally obnoxious. Everyone from
Madonna to Aerosmith to whoever will start using overt appropriation. It's
happening already, but what happens when it really gets blown wide open?
Should there be a way, is there a way, to distinguish between "gross, crass exploitation of past works" and the sort of "true art" that so many of us love and cherish? Or are we doomed to a future choked with music
like "Ice Ice Baby" and "Hippychick"?
I have an answer but I'm going to wait till someone else speaks up. ;-)


Steev Hise, Infoserf
steevAThise.org http://www.cyborganic.com/people/steev recycled art site: http://www.detritus.net -----------------------------------------------------------------
"I think a picture is more like the real world when it's made out of the real world." - Robert Rauschenberg