I dont know about you but the mere mention of Conant Gardens conjures up Slum Village’s J-Dilla produced classic on now classic album Fantastic, Vol. 2. I can literally hear the bass line and the chant “Where we come from is place they call Conant Gardens” trailed by echos of ATCQ’s Ward Tour sample “MOTOWN” … “We don’t stop nah we don’t quit, we just do it, do it, do it, do it.”

Yeah, that’s exactly what I heard when I learned of Native instruments latest Maschine expansion package “Conant Gardens” by Amp Fiddler. For those that don’t know, Amp is credited as Dilla’s mentor and as the guy who first introduced J-Dilla to the MPC. That is about as legendary as it gets. I’d say that Native Instruments has done good with introducing this new Conant Gardens expansion. Oh, and perhaps the coolest part of this release is that a portion of the proceeds from the sells of CONANT GARDENS will be donated to the J-Dilla Foundation.

“For me, the CONANT GARDENS Expansion is rooted in funk, soul, electronic, hip-hop and afrobeat, inspired by the innovative musicians I have had the pleasure of working with. The funky keyboards, guitar licks and pads are very much a reflection of my style, and the drums are pure Detroit Conant Gardens – gritty and hard hip-hop sounds. Many of the snares and kicks are from my studio vintage Gretsch drum set, mixed in with my personal library and of course classic Dilla sounds that he gave to me years ago.

I like the ease of using MASCHINE – people can tweak, resample, slice and create whatever their imagination can dream of. The sky’s the limit. Space is the place. My late son Dorian is my motivation. The late J Dilla is my inspiration. And funk is its own reward.”  Amp Fiddler (courtesy of www.native-instruments.com)

Let’s check out the kit in action…

New MASCHINE Expansion created by Amp Fiddler focuses on the soulful side of Detroit’s music heritage

Berlin, August 22, 2012 – Native Instruments today introduced CONANT GARDENS, a new MASCHINE Expansion that reflects the soulful side of Detroit – covering hip-hop, funk, afrobeat and deep house. Named after the district of Detroit renowned as the birthplace of many African- American musicians and artists, this expansion explores the distinctive sound of the neighborhood through tailored drum sounds, percussion and sampled phrases.

CONANT GARDENS was created by Amp Fiddler – former Parliament/Funkadelic keyboardist and long-time mentor to J Dilla. As a producer, the late J Dilla is credited with defining modern underground hip-hop. Dilla’s smoky, soulful and sample-heavy sound is recreated by this MASCHINE Expansion, and further enriched by Amp’s access to Dilla’s extensive library.

The 45 kits in CONANT GARDENS mix one-shot drums and long-sample basslines, clavinet riffs, guitar and Rhodes piano phrases. Set to ADSR mode, classic sample techniques are emulated, while providing an intuitive way to play the phrases. Amp Fiddler’s riffs and melodies, recorded on his own pristine collection of vintage and modern gear, are provided in their raw forms as additional Melodic Kits.

For instant use with MASCHINE or MASCHINE MIKRO, a number of pre- programmed patterns are provided that span Detroit’s rich and varied musical landscape. Driving bass and drum rhythms from respected Detroit artists Black Milk and DJ Dez complement Amp’s layered, melodic approach.

A compact version of CONANT GARDENS is also available for iMASCHINE – the groove sketchpad for iPhone® / iPod touch®.

Pricing and availability

CONANT GARDENS is available at the NI Online Shop for $59/49 EUR. A percentage of each purchase will be donated to the J Dilla Foundation.

The iMASCHINE version is available at the in-app store for $0.99 / 0,79 EUR.

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