Anatomy of a Sample: The Legal Complexities Behind Hip-Hop's Creative Backbone

One of hip-hop’s greatest musical legacies is its use of sampling as a creative technique. For labels, publishers and other rights holders, however, the rise of sampling also potentially poses a legal and logistical nightmare: What is the threshold between rewording a lyric or rehashing a melody and infringing on valuable copyright? Has technology made answering this question easier or harder?


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