A couple of weeks ago Amar put up a very interesting post about the intersection of video games with hip-hop culture and music over at a new group blog that he's starting up with some other folks. In response, I thought I'd point out a couple of other tracks that also use some video game samples. I'll be deleting the audio files in about a week, so download them while you can.
Saafir, "Smart Bomb," Qwest Records 1996
This track was first released on a promo 12" for the album "The Hit List" which didn't actually end up getting released until 1999. It uses a ridiculous number of video game samples - I've never been able to identify them all. This was probably the last track Saafir put out that I really loved.
Scram Jones, "64 Bit," Sure Shot Recordings 2005
Scram Jones is a new up-and-coming producer/DJ/MC and this new track off his EP "Loose Cannons" takes a portion of the theme to one of the Super Mario Bros. games (number 3, maybe?) and explodes it. He's been featured as a guest on a few tracks in the last year, but it looks like he's finally making his move to get his name out there.
I'm not entirely sure that this is really a major development in hip-hop; rather I think that the concept of hip-hop has always been that producers have sampled sounds from popular sources. First it was disco, funk, and jazz; then it was film, and then producers started reaching for more obscure sources, yet still recognizable to many people. Video games have now thoroughly permeated their way through pop culture - everybody can recognize Super Mario Brothers, or Zelda, or Metroid. They are a part of the zeitgeist; an indelible anchor in the minds of the youth. It is only natural that they would be incorporated into hip-hop.