Breaks Music

Written by Charles Peacock
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Breakbeat, or breaks, is an evolving type of dance music that has literally been around for decades. With roots in 1970s soul and disco, breaks utilizes looped old school beats as the rhythm section for a totally new type of electronic groove. Like most genres of dance music, breaks has quite a few varieties: nu skool, old school, progressive and funky.

What Is Breaks?

The word break itself is a shortening of "breakbeat." Breakbeats are short samples of music that are looped to create a continuous rhythm track. While most breakbeats are short samples of traditional drums, you can actually use anything for a breakbeat as long as it creates a continuous rhythm.

Breakbeats first originated when DJs began looping breakdown parts from old disco and funk records. A breakdown is usually a part in a record where the instruments are stripped away, and the only things left are the drums. Disco recordings began using breakdowns to that DJs could easily mix from one record to the next.

By looping breakdown parts and creating breakbeats, a whole new style of music was born. In the old days, breaks tracks weren't much more than the drums themselves with a talking vocal track on top. These days there are all sorts of breaks music out there, as DJs continue to add inventive layers on top of their breakbeat tracks.


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