9th Wonder on how hip-hop is like applesauce for the pills, a gateway to knowledge and history

A revered hip-hop producer who got his start with Phonte and Big Pooh in the North Carolina-based group Little Brother, 9th Wonder has worked with an array of top-shelf artists, from Jay-Z and Destiny's Child to Mary J. Blige and Ludacris, among many others. Known as one of the best samplers in hip-hop, who's especially fond of drawing pieces from old soul records, he credits J Dilla, Pete Rock, DJ Premier and the RZA with influencing his style. Recently, 9th Wonder has ventured into the world of teaching, instructing classes at North Carolina Central University and Duke University. We caught up with 9th yesterday and talked about the importance of hip-hop in teaching, the merits of sampling, and building bridges to past generations.

See also: - Thursday: The Foodchain at the Bluebird with 9th Wonder, 12/20/12 - The week's five best concerts, 12/17-12/21 - The Foodchain pushes its live energy into the studio

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Noah Hubbell