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Kevin McKay releases Cover Versions Album in Response to Sampling Issues


Kevin McKay, the founder of Glasgow Underground has released his new album “No Samples Were Harmed In The Making Of This Record” on 8th November.

The album delivers a fresh look at the concept of cover versions, an area generally derided in electronic music. As the title suggests, the album is a reaction to the clampdown on sampling which has taken place in the digital domain since the introduction of advanced audio recognition technology and the subsequent impact on the creative process of making music.

In the ’70s Larry Levan and Walter Gibbons raided the master tapes of young disco labels to create monster club jams. In the ’80’s Farley ‘Jackmaster’ Funk reworked Steve ‘Silk’ Hurley’s version of Isaac Hayes “I Can’t Turn Around”, to create “Love Can’t Turn Around”. The ’90s saw DJ Sneak snatch pieces of Teddy Pendergrass for “You Can’t Hide From Your Bud”.

While in the ’00s Mylo sampled two records into one with “In My Arms” (from the platinum-selling album ‘Destroy Rock ‘n’ Roll’ which Kevin McKay produced and mixed). These tracks and many others were all allowed to develop over time as part of a hotbed of underground dance music.

However, as McKay says “They might have ended up legally correct ‘hits’ with the original writers and performers being credited but they didn’t start that way. And from being involved in one, I can say for sure that without the ability to fly things under the radar, at least one of them would not have succeeded. It’s now virtually impossible to test out sample-based tracks without months of legal work and thousands of pounds in clearances. My idea was to take something that has been traditionally frowned on in dance music – the cover song – and make an album of compelling club music out of covers.” 

“No Samples Were Harmed In The Making Of This Record” will be available from all major streaming and download services.

Listen here: https://gu.lnk.to/nosamples.

Grahame Farmer

Grahame Farmer’s love affair with electronic music goes back to the mid-90s when he first began to venture into the UK’s beloved rave culture, finding himself interlaced with some of the country’s most seminal club spaces. A trip to dance music’s anointed holy ground of Ibiza in 1997 then cemented his sense of purpose and laid the foundations for what was to come over the next few decades of his marriage to the music industry.

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