ESG (which stands for “Emerald, Sapphire and Gold”) was composed primarily of a group of sisters, with the group’s original lineup featuring Valerie, Renee, Marie and Deborah Scroggins. “UFO” comes off of their 1981 self-titled EP, which saw release on 99 Records, a small label that to that point had primarily put out releases by post-punk group Liquid Liquid. ESG is a particularly highly sampled group; “UFO” has been sampled by numerous artists since its release, from TLC (on “Das Da Way We Like ‘Em”) to J Dilla (“Geek Down”) to 2Pac (“Strictly 4 My N.I.G.G.A.Z”). In 1992, the sisters put out an album called Sample Credits Don’t Pay Our Bills, addressing the often-dubious legality of sampling in hip hop’s early days. In 2006, Renee Scroggins participated in an interview with Girl Talk about the usage of samples in music, which is also worth reading.

In 2007, the group said they were calling it quits, but they reappeared in 2009 to open for the Yeah Yeah Yeahs in New York. They put out their most recent (and potentially last) album, Closure, earlier this year.

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