In 1969, the D.C. band The Winstons put out an LP with a funky rendition of the traditional gospel song “Amen Brother” that featured a 4 bar, six second drum solo performed by the great Gregory C. Coleman. Great Big Story explains how this solo, known as the “Amen Break”, became the most sampled loop in history after “BreakBeat Lou” Flores featured the solo on the early hip hop compilation album Ultimate Breaks and Beats.
What do Skrillex, David Bowie, Salt-N-Pepa and basically every drum and bass track have in common? They’ve all used the Amen break…For many years, the solo was buried deep in musical archives—that is until hip-hop pioneer Lou Flores, aka “Breakbeat Lou,” featured it on his compilation, “The Ultimate Breaks and Beats.” Once producers caught wind of the solo, it took off, going on to change music forever.
Here’s the original version of the “Amen Break”.