SAMPLE detection

Is it a sample, or a recreation? How much has been copied? How has it been manipulated? How do we authenticate and compare the audio fairly and accurately?

Comparing and authenticating audio

Sample detection is the practice of establishing whether audio from an earlier recording has been used as part of a later one. The recordings are imported into music software for visual analysis and critical listening; methods include spectrogram analysis (‘graphs’ of the musical content), waveform comparison, tempo and pitch matching, and research/discussion of creative processes. Past clients include law firms, media companies, record labels, beat-makers/hip-hop artists, and music producers.

Recent project | “1990s rapper” (2020)

In 2020 Dr Bennett assisted a rapper in authenticating a sample of his vocal from the 1990s, as used in a hit by a grammy-winning artist in 2018. The artist’s management were unaware of the sample source, and after reading Dr Bennett’s report they amicably agreed to include the rapper in the song credits and receive publishing royalties going forward.

Recent project | “1970s producer” (2021)

In 2021 Dr Bennett acted for an NYC law firm, assisting a producer in authenticating an uncredited sample of a funk/pop track that he produced in the 1970s, and which was used by a beatmaker and household-name artist in the 2010s. The samplist’s work was recreated by Dr Bennett, using the original 1970s audio to remake the 2010s recording in full, by reverse-engineering the sample manipulation and editing methods used. This was used to provide compelling evidence of the source of the sample. Dr Bennett’s report was used by the producer’s legal representatives to negotiate a satisfactory settlement.