Listen 2 This #09

You Really Heard It Here First

Samples, references, and rip-offs

''ALL I HAVE'' Jennifer Lopez feat. LL Cool J: Fresh from the samplefest ''Jenny From the Block,'' Lopez borrows again. The victim? R&B has-been Debra Laws (sister of Earth, Wind & Fire sax man Ronnie Laws) and her only hit, ''Very Special'' (1981). Come on, J. Lo, that song was all she had!

''PARADISE'' LL Cool J feat. Amerie: And as for Mr. Smith, his last duet is yet another rap retread of Keni Burke's 1982 soul classic, ''Rising to the Top.'' He's nobody now, but Burke's bass line lives on.

Originally posted Mar 14, 2003 Published in issue #700 Mar 14, 2003 Order article reprints