From Etta to Avicii to Flo Rida

When Avicii passed away on Friday, I did what I often do when a musician dies. I dove into his catalogue of work.

He's got a song called "LE7ELS" that I quite like. It came out in late 2011. Here's that jam.

At the time, my oldest daughter was really into Top 40 music, so I would hear Flo Rida's "Good Feeling" often. Does this sound familiar?

I like that song, too... and upon further reflection, it seems the jam I really dig is Etta James's 1962 single "Something's Got a Hold on Me". Without Etta, I have little interest in "LE7ELS" or "Good Feeling".

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Comments (11 - click here to join in!)


I'm surprised you weren't aware it was Etta James. It's pretty common now to have a EDM producer behind a lot of big hits. Dua Lipa has 2 hits like that, Zedd has several including "Stay" and there are lots of others.

You're basically saying you enjoyed a song with a sample in it.

April 23, 2018 @ 10:12 AM


Radiohead once wrote a song called "Anyone Can Play Guitar." You certainly
wouldn't know it form the current state of popular music. Not trying to be an elitist
or a snob or holier than thou or attempting to dance on this man's freshly-paved grave,
just stating what a difference 25 years or so makes in the popular culture!! I will say one thing,
however: Songs such as this one do help to give a second life to a lot of music that may have
been slept on the first time around.

April 23, 2018 @ 1:34 PM

Urooj Islam

BREAKING NEWS: Music sampling exists!

April 23, 2018 @ 1:57 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

No need to Irvsplain sampling to this old Public Enemy diehard.

What's interesting here is not the sample used but two singles released around the same time using the same sample prominently.

April 23, 2018 @ 2:17 PM

Urooj Islam

My "Six degrees of Sampling" story for this song goes one step further than yours, Mike.

I only heard about "Levels" and Avicii through Skrillex's remix of "Levels" so for me it went Skrillex to Levels to Avicii to Good Feeling to Flo Rida to Etta James.

A long and winding road.

I still prefer Skrillex's version to the original track.

April 23, 2018 @ 2:35 PM


Now now Basement. This an artist who mashed up an US bluegrass singer with EDM. The lyrics of the song question out society and our disconnection with each other. The proper video references US marines whose motto is #SemperFi. It translates to “always faithful”. In basic military training they break you down and rebuild you. A pillar of that is never leave a brother behind. If only we could do that with each other.

One doesn’t need to play guitar to be creative. That is you being a rock snob. It’s very possible for EDM to be as creative and genuis as rock. Look at Robert Miles - Children. A song written to calm down the club because wired young “children” were leaving the club and dying in record numbers from car accidents. There are no lyrics in the song but the emotion is clear.

April 23, 2018 @ 3:17 PM



I wasn't "mansplaining" anything, I was just honestly surprised you didn't know that was an Etta James song. I think the sample's been used in hiphop in the past. In the case of Avicii the sample *is* the song.

April 24, 2018 @ 10:52 AM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike


I didn't say you were mansplaining anything. I said you were Irvsplaining. You just don't get it...

April 24, 2018 @ 12:11 PM


My previous comment's intent wasn't meant to be derisive of Avicii or EDM in general. Admittedly not my go-to listening choice, but have a great fondness/interest of many beat makers and producer types going back countless decades: Chemical Brothers, Propellerheads, DJ Shadow, The Bomb Squad, Pete Rock, DJ Premier, and The Avalanches, etc.. My comment regarding Radiohead and "Anyone Can Play Guitar" was admittedly snarky and overly-sarcastic, but also highly ironic, as they largely abandoned traditional guitar rock after their second album ("The Bends"). If such a song came outtoday it would probably be called "Anyone Can Play a Sampler!" Also, I did mention my appreciation of the fact that one of the best things about EDM/electronica is that through the use of samples and musical inerpolations, many older artists/songs get a second chance at wider
recognition and/or financial compensation.

April 24, 2018 @ 4:57 PM

Jason from Sudbury

How did Avicii pass away? 28 is awefully young.

May 8, 2018 @ 8:05 PM

Toronto Mike Verified as the defacto Toronto Mike

@Jason from Sudbury


May 8, 2018 @ 8:29 PM

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