Kevin Saunderson is today giving away his 1987 track 'The Sound', recorded as Reese & Santiago, in response to it being copied by Italian producers Giacomo Godi & Emiliano Nencioni. He's also giving away their track 'Beat Me Back' which is built almost entirely on an uncleared sample.
As well as being a strongly worded riposte from one of techno's founders, it's also grounds for considering the large numbers of re-edits currently doing the rounds, many of them with no reference to the original artists being sometimes almost straight-up copied by today's supposed young new talents...
"Dear friends, fans and members of the music industry,
Today I’m giving away as a free download one of the productions I am most proud of:
I recorded 'The Sound' back in 1987 and released it on my own KMS Records label. It was a massive hit at New York’s Paradise Garage and in Chicago and of course Detroit. Once it hit the UK it became one of the earliest Detroit anthems right acround Europe, a huge underground record across the globe - a true desert island techno track. It is such a special record to me because it was one of my first really successful productions and I hope that you all will enjoy this free, fresh digital download of my original 1987 version.
The reason I have decided to give this track away for free is because of a situation that recently developed involving the unauthorized sampling of 'The Sound' by Italian producers Giacomo Godi & Emiliano Nencioni (Supernova) in their release 'Beat Me Back' on Nirvana Recordings. It came to my attention that they are licensing and selling, with considerable success, this track which is nothing more than a continuous loop of the main hook from 'The Sound'.
For me to hear ‘Supernova’ taking an extended loop of 'The Sound' and claiming that this is their own original composition and production is both dishonest and disrespectful. My first thought was that they were perhaps naïve, but as they have apparently been recording together since 2002 this seems unlikely. In any event this is completely unacceptable, we cannot continue to let this kind of wholesale rip off go unchallenged and tolerate 'artists' who completely sample recordings, add nothing of their own and then release the results as their own work.
I have a huge affection for sampling, it’s how some of the most inspiring and ground breaking tracks of our times were created. We’ve pretty much all sampled records at some time, and cleared the sample so we can use it on our releases, but it is just not cool to take someone else’s music, create a big old loop of it and then put your name on it and try to have success entirely off the back of another artist’s efforts. This really has got to stop. For this reason, I have uploaded the Godi/Nencioni version of 'The Sound' to Soundcloud so that you all can download this for free if you so wish. These producers and their record label should not be profiting from my back catalogue... this is not their track to sell."