Drake on ‘Hotline Bling’ and ‘Cha Cha’ Similarities: ‘I Just Try My Hand at It’
If you haven’t noticed by now, Drake’s ubiquitous track “Hotline Bling” sounds very similar to D.R.A.M.’s hit “Cha Cha.” The Virginia rhymer recently blasted Drizzy for jacking his beat. But Drake doesn’t see it that way.
In an interview with the FADER, the OVO leader believes he only recorded over the one riddim like they do in dancehall. The “rhythm” in question is that of Timmy Thomas’ “Why Can’t We Live Together,” which hovers around the same chord progression that “Cha Cha” used by sampling Super Mario.
Drake seems to acknowledge that “Hotline Bling” is based off “Cha Cha” but he wanted to put his own spin on the sample.
“You know, like in Jamaica, you’ll have a riddim and it’s like, everyone has to do a song on that,” he explained to the magazine. “Imagine that in rap, or imagine that in R&B. Imagine if we got one beat and every single person - me, this guy, this guy, all these guys - had to do a song on that one beat."
"So sometimes I’ll pick a beat that’s a bit, like, sunnier, I guess is the word you used, than usual, and I just try my hand at it," he continued. "And that’s kind of what ‘Hotline Bling’ was. And I loved it. It’s cool. I’ve been excited by that sort of creative process."
Essentially, Drake pulled a quasi-Jay Z -- "Takeover" style. Instead of a hot line, Drake turned D.R.A.M.'s hot groove into a hot song.
So the question here is can both songs live together in musical harmony? It appears that way.
D.R.A.M. is on tour with Chance the Rapper and is getting props for creating the original song. Meanwhile, Drake could possibly earn his first solo No. 1 hit of his career with this track. And of course, the dance-filled video has generated some hilarious memes.
So what do you think? Was Drake wrong for jacking D.R.A.M's beat and running with it? Or is it all good in the name of the riddim? Tell us in the comments below.