What Song Did Kanye West Sample for Runaway?

What Song Did Kanye West Sample for Runaway?

Kanye West’s hit song “Runaway” is known for its mesmerizing melody and soulful lyrics. But did you know that the song also features a sample from another artist’s work?

In this article, we will explore the origins of the sample used in “Runaway” and delve into the creative process behind this iconic track.

The Sample

The sample used in “Runaway” is derived from the song “Expo 83” by French electronic music pioneer Jean-Pierre Mirouze. Released in 1971, “Expo 83” is a captivating instrumental track that combines elements of funk, jazz, and psychedelic music.

Kanye West discovered this hidden gem and decided to incorporate it into his own composition.

The Creative Process

Kanye West has always been known for his innovative approach to music production. When it came to sampling “Expo 83” for “Runaway,” he wanted to create something unique that would complement the original track while adding his own signature sound.

To achieve this, Kanye employed various techniques and elements.

Chopping and Pitching

One of the key techniques used by Kanye was chopping the sample into smaller segments. By isolating specific sections of “Expo 83,” he was able to rearrange them and create new musical patterns.

Additionally, Kanye altered the pitch of certain segments to fit seamlessly with his own composition, giving it a distinct flavor.

Layering and Effects

Another important aspect of Kanye’s creative process was layering different sounds on top of each other. By adding additional instruments and vocal snippets, he enhanced the depth and richness of the sample.

Furthermore, Kanye employed various effects such as reverb and distortion to shape the overall sonic landscape of “Runaway.”

The Impact

“Runaway” quickly became a fan favorite and a critical success, partly due to the unique sample used in its production. The combination of Jean-Pierre Mirouze’s timeless composition and Kanye West’s innovative approach resulted in a truly unforgettable track that resonated with audiences around the world.


In conclusion, “Runaway” by Kanye West features a sample from Jean-Pierre Mirouze’s “Expo 83.” Through his creative process of chopping, pitching, layering, and applying various effects, Kanye was able to transform the original sample into something entirely new and captivating.

The success of “Runaway” is a testament to both Kanye’s musical prowess and his ability to pay homage to artists who have influenced him. So next time you listen to this iconic song, remember the hidden gem that inspired it.