When I first listened to this new DJ Khaled
track, I noticed something about 40 seconds in- it's literally "Maria, Maria" by Santana. I had a feeling it was familiar, and honestly with the way today's pop music goes it isn't really a surprise that DJ Khaled took from this 1999 track. So maybe DJ Khaled is a Santana fan? Who knows. But the song basically covers "Maria, Maria." For a second I had the thought that maybe "Wild Thoughts" is "bringing back" this classic hit of the late 90s.
Yet so many of the young people listening to this new DJ Khaled song, either weren't born yet or were maybe at age five when the original song came out. So it doesn't really feel like it's bringing anything back, rather it feels like DJ Khaled trying to make a hit by bringing a Bryson Tiller, Rihanna, and a Santana sample together. This song may be another one of his "catchy summer hits" and I'm sure if you don't like it now, maybe it'll grow on you after the radio replays it from now until mid-September.
Who knows, maybe DJ Khaled is actually a huge fan of the song and wanted to pay tribute to it, but why make it so obvious? Knowing his style of trying to get a bunch of artists together to makes big hits, it doesn't seem like he was trying to resurrect this Santana song, or praise it in any way. The song gives that fun summer beat and Rihanna's vocals, along with a verse from Bryson Tiller that seemed a little off.
There is one person's opinion on the song that might be more important than the rest - and that is Carlos Santana himself. According to billboard, Santana was excited that DJ Khaled was bringing back this track and having it be heard by a new generation of audiences. So hey! At least someone is happy about the song, but again - so many younger people listening won't even know that the song is a giant sample. Sure, people might enjoy it throughout the summer and beyond, but not everyone will recognize the original, and that's the bittersweet thing about samples. There is a way to do samples and there's definitely a way to not do them. And unfortunately for DJ Khaled, this one just wasn't good.
The original Santana song is a classic throwback, but then DJ Khaled shouts the words "we the best music!" and adds two other artists and the sample and expects to make a "new" hit. Something about his whole system seems unfair. I would love to hear a DJ Khaled song that was fully his, with no collaborations, or samples, and that was good (burn!).
Maybe the fact that Santana is happy about it will make me not immediately change it when it comes on the radio. It's nice to see that at least the original artist is excited about it and not upset at how the recreation took place.
So feel free to listen to both tracks and make up your own mind about it, but as for myself, I may never come to love it.