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home » releases » Necksnappin’


If you’re a rap music enthusiast, you know sampling is a definite part of beat-making. And for the past 25 years, the one sound that’s been consistently used and abused has been Jazz-Funk, an overlooked, critics-panned genre when it was first created, only to be celebrated by the streets years later. The deep, complex, modal compositions, the audacious arrangements, were balanced out with a sense of gritty, true r’n’b and funk aggressivity.

It’s been a very long time since I wanted to create a band that would play that music, and from the start, it was a very clear position not to compose for this one project, but to challenge my arranging abilities in playing the widest spectrum of compositions from that era, instead of writing “a la back-in-the-day”, wich would have been reducing the effort to a mere exercice in style.

Besides playing a repertoire that is totally ignored nowadays, it forced us into finding tricks and workarounds to play the tunes, because of the limitation induced by the choice of strictly period correct instrumentation: I wanted to use something a small, gigging funk band group from that era would have had on stage. Eventually, we started developing a sound of our own and adding our modern, hip hop intensity.

I had a hard time assembling the perfect team, as I needed each instrumentist; to master the whole array of jazz and r’n’b styles from that era; to be a great sight-reader (the sophisticated arrangements would be extremely time consuming to learn by heart); and to have the righteous, ballsy attitude and street-wise feel for the music.

Slikk Tim, drummer, arranger and producer for DopeGems

Créé en 2011 par le batteur et arrangeur Slikk Tim, DopeGems est un groupe de cinq musiciens dédié au funk instrumental des 70’s, genre très prisé par les fans de hip-hop, DJ et collectionneurs de vyniles.

Leur premier album – Necksnappin’ – est un melange de jazz, de funk et de BO de films, uniquement des reprises de titres extraits de vinyles rares , devenus collectors pour les diggers et producteurs de hip hop à travers le monde… mais une musique qui est très rarement joué live. Voilà d’où vient l’idée de DopeGems!

En combinant vibraphone, guitare et clavier vintage sur une section rythmique solide comme un roc, le collectif sonne mieux que la somme de ses individualités et permet au groupe une grande versatilité, d’improvisations brulantes à des grooves puissants, en conservant toujours une touche cinématique.

Quel que soit le choix des titres qu’ils réarrangent, ils transmettent à chaque titre leur son puissant et authentique tout en conservant les details qui font l’esprit du morceau original.
DopeGems prend la musique dans les bacs à vinyles pour la porter à nouveau sur scène, live!