Wednesday, June 27, 2012

Us3: Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)

I know what you’re thinking – “He must really be sick as I never heard him feature anything like this in the past – That infection must have moved to his head.” Not so. I’ve liked Us3’s “Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)” since I first heard it 1993 as the opening music of the movie “Renaissance Man” starring Danny DeVito. It was Us3’s only hit in the United States and managed to climb the charts to the #9 position by March 1994.

This hip-hop tune, as did all of the cuts on their “Hand on the Torch” album, extensively used samples from the Blue Note Records’ catalog.

The spoken intro and the line “How about a big hand there” are by Pee Wee Marquette and come from Art Blakey’s “A Night at Birdland, Volume 1.” Samples of two men at the beginning of the track saying “yeah” and “what’s that” are from Lou Donaldson’s “Everything I Do Gonna Be Funky (From Now On).”

Herbie Hancock’s Cantaloupe Island

The pièce de résistance is the sample of Herbie Hancock’s “Cantaloupe Island” that was recorded thirty years previously on the album “Empyrean Isles.” That also featured Freddie Hubbard, Ron Carter, and Anthony Williams.

Hubbard plays the coronet on the original recording. The trumpet parts added to Us3’s version were by Gerard Presencer. Although the song is in the same key as Hancock’s original (Fm), the sample is sped up some.


  1. I just landed on your blog - and I'm very happy that I did. There's such an interesting selection of music here - I've even posted some of the tracks on my own blog (including Spyder Turner.)

    Though my blog is private at the moment, I'll add a link to yours in my blogroll. Marie

    By the way, does Mountain State University offer distance ed courses in the History of Popular Music?

  2. Thanks for your comments. I like a wide variety of music, so that carries over into what I feature.

    Unfortunately, MSU does not offer such a course at all. It would be an interesting one if we did.


  3. Hi Dean Owston,
    After re-reading my last comment, I realized that it sounded as if I was saying that I'd posted some of your tunes after discovering the blog. What I meant to say was that coincidentally I'd previously posted a few of the same songs as you had. Also, as a new arrival, I'm sad to hear that you're going to be retiring this blog (. . . but there are so many more tunes for you to write about!) Marie

  4. Marie:

    I actually did understand what you intended to say. So there was no confusion there.

    It will be three years in September and 1,000 posts at that time. I figure I might as well quit while I am ahead. I am pleased with your comments and thank you. If enough people feel the same way as you, I might be persuaded to continue for a while longer.

    Thanks again.