Rockit

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This article is about the Herbie Hancock song. For other uses, see Rockit (disambiguation).
"Rockit"
Single by Herbie Hancock
from the album Future Shock
Released June 1983
Recorded 1982
Genre Electro[1]
Length 5:27 (Album Version)
3:54 (Single Version)
Label Columbia
03978
Writer(s) Herbie Hancock
Bill Laswell
Michael Beinhorn
Producer(s) Bill Laswell
Certification Gold (CRIA)[2]

"Rockit" is a composition recorded by Herbie Hancock. It was released as a single from his 1983 album Future Shock. The composition was written by Hancock, bass guitarist Bill Laswell, and synthesizer/drum machine programmer Michael Beinhorn.

History[edit]

Constructed and composed during the recording process at various studios, including Martin Bisi's in Brooklyn NY, the composition is the first recognized popular single to feature scratching and other turntablist techniques, performed by GrandMixer D.ST - an influential DJ in the early years of turntablism.

Some years later turntablists such as DJ Qbert and Mix Master Mike cited the composition as 'revelatory' in the documentary film Scratch, inspiring their interest in the instrument. The single was a major radio hit in the United Kingdom and a popular dance club record in the United States.

Music video[edit]

The music video, directed by duo Godley & Creme[3] and featuring robot-like movable sculptures (by Jim Whiting) dancing, spinning and even walking in time to the music in a "virtual house" in London, England, garnered five MTV Video Music Awards in 1984, including Best Concept Video and Best Special Effects. Hancock himself appears and plays keyboard only as an image on a television, which is smashed on the pavement outside the front door of the house at the end of the video.

Appearances in other media[edit]

  • It was studied for the music and art portion of the 1990-1991 Academic Decathlon competition. The musical focus for that year was Music of the Post-World War II era.
  • It is featured in the 1986 Soviet film Office Boy, where young people breakdance in the street. This version of B.T. & The City Slickers was produced only once in Breakdance.
  • It appears in the film Zoolander, where it is used to break Derek's hypnotism during the finale catwalk scene.
  • It was used for the radio program "Showboat" on Soccer AM.
  • It was covered by jazz group Re:Jazz, on their 2006 album Expansion.
  • It was featured on season 3, episode 4 of 30 Rock during a brief moment when NBC page Kenneth is shown street-dancing for side cash.
  • It was featured on The Simpsons Treehouse of Horror XVI. It shows a robot playing it on a synthesizer whilst a pair of robotic legs are dancing in time to the music, parodying the music video.

Chart performance[edit]

References[edit]

  1. ^
  2. ^ "Gold Platinum Database". Music Canada. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  3. ^ Wiederhorn, Jon (August 23, 2002). DMX? White Stripes? Which Breakthrough Will Stand The Test Of Time?. MTV. Viacom International. Retrieved May 8, 2009. 
  4. ^ "Synthesizer Medley at the 1985 Grammys". YouTube. 
  5. ^ a b "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Chart Positions Pre 1989 Part 4". Australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  6. ^ "Herbie Hancock – Rockit – Austriancharts.at" (in German). Ö3 Austria Top 40. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  7. ^ "Ultratop.be – Herbie Hancock – Rockit" (in Dutch). Ultratop 50. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  8. ^ (Dutch) "Rock It – HERBIE HANCOCK". Top 30. Retrieved June 16, 2014. "Hoogste notering in de top 30 : 4" 
  9. ^ (French) "InfoDisc : Tous les Titres par Artiste". InfoDisc. Select "Herbie Hancock" from the artist drop-down menu. Retrieved July 19, 2013. 
  10. ^ "Herbie Hancock – Rockit". Officialcharts.de. GfK Entertainment. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  11. ^ "The Irish Charts – All there is to know". Irishcharts.ie. Retrieved July 19, 2013. 
  12. ^ "Nederlandse Top 40 – Herbie Hancock - Rockit search results" (in Dutch) Dutch Top 40. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  13. ^ "Dutchcharts.nl – Herbie Hancock – Rockit" (in Dutch). Single Top 100. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  14. ^ "Charts.org.nz – Herbie Hancock – Rockit". Top 40 Singles. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  15. ^ "Swedishcharts.com – Herbie Hancock – Rockit". Singles Top 60. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  16. ^ "Herbie Hancock – Rockit – swisscharts.com". Swiss Singles Chart. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  17. ^ "Archive Chart" UK Singles Chart. Retrieved July 19, 2013.
  18. ^ a b c "Future Shock – Awards". AllMusic. All Media Network. Retrieved May 30, 2013. 
  19. ^ CASH BOX Top 100 Singles – Week ending OCTOBER 29, 1983 at the Wayback Machine (archived September 11, 2012). Cash Box magazine. Retrieved June 16, 2014.
  20. ^ "RPM Top Singles." RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved May 30, 2013.
  21. ^ (Dutch) "Jaaroverzichten 1983". Ultratop. Hung Medien. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  22. ^ "Forum – ARIA Charts: Special Occasion Charts – Top 100 End of Year AMR Charts – 1980s". Australian-charts.com. Hung Medien. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  23. ^ "Top Singles – Volume 41, No. 17, January 05 1985". RPM. Library and Archives Canada. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 
  24. ^ (French) "TOP – 1984". Top-france.fr. Retrieved June 16, 2014. 

External links[edit]

Preceded by
"Do It Again Medley with Billie Jean" by Slingshot
US Billboard Hot Dance Club Play number-one single
August 27, 1983 – September 17, 1983 (4 weeks)
Succeeded by
"Holiday" / "Lucky Star" by Madonna