Check out the origins of iconic hip hop samples

I was once privileged enough to kick it with underground MC extraordinaire Homeboy Sandman and got to pick his brain about all things hip hop. One of the standout quotes from our session stemmed from his feelings on the genre itself. "Hip hop is like a virus," he said, "you can take any song, add a drum loop, and suddenly you've turned it into a hip hop track." 

Even though it's become less controversial than it was in the early days of hip hop, I don't think sampling gets the respect it deserves. Aside from the craftsmanship on display to excise a specific part of a song and repurpose it, sampling- when done correctly- acts as a living homage to music history. In my eyes, sampling makes rap an incredibly universal genre, as it can incorporate any genre. The YouTube channel Songs and Samples explores this concept by tracing the DNA that powers some of rap's best beats.