There are a lot of questions surrounding Kanye West’s just-released “Lift Yourself” song — like what exactly do those “scoopity-whoop” lyrics mean? — but one of the immediate question marks surrounded the soul sample that kicks off the track.
That mystery was quickly solved over on the Kanyetothe forum, which uncovered that the lyrics and melody matched parts of the 1973 song “Liberty” by Amnesty. Of course, “Lift Yourself” speeds up the vocals — a technique that was Kanye’s early signature as a producer — to sound more like an all-female group instead of the eight-man-strong Amnesty.
The Indianapolis-based group was known for its three-part harmonies and brass section, according to a bio from Now-Again Records, which has reissued a handful of Amnesty recordings over the years. Interesting to note that Now-Again is affiliated with Stones Throw Records, which houses DJ/producer Madlib, who of course worked with West on his most recent album, 2016’s The Life of Pablo.
Listen to “Liberty” in full below, and find “Lift Yourself” over on Kanye’s website.