One of country music’s all time superstars, Kenny Rogers is so popular he’s even managed to get away with opening a chicken restaurant on the back of his fame. He’s had countless hits, and his voice has been the soundtrack for generations from the deep south of America and down-on-their-luck souls from around the world alike. Somehow, he’s also found his music hit home with a generation of hip-hop producers – here are three of the most bizarre

Kenny Rogers & Wyclef Jean – Pharoahe Monch Dub Plate

The Gambler is still one of the most popular folk songs of all time. It’s no surprise that Wyclef Jean took a shine to it and rapped over the classic – but the fact he convinced Rogers to re-record the lyrics to “You gotta count your dub plates / Before you touch that turntable / If you run out of big tunes / That means your sound is done” is a little more perplexing.

Pras ft. Mya & Ol’ Dirty Bastard – Ghetto Supastar

Written by The Bee Gees, they passed Islands in the Stream on to Kenny Rogers and Dolly Parton, and they made it one of the most recognisable duets of all time, so it goes. For the soundtrack of long-forgotten film Bulworth, Pras (of The Fugees fame) decided to re-record it, changing a few words, inviting Mya and ODB along too, changing the tone of the track a little.

Coolio ft. Kenny Rogers – The Hustler

Another riff off The Gambler, but this time without customising the song – instead, using it as a bed and sampling it – and getting Rogers to have a little appearance in the video, too. Oh, Coolio.

Tue 2 Jul, O2 Apollo, Stockport Road, Ardwick Green, Manchester, M12 6AP, 7pm, £44,

Tue 2 Jul
Matthew Britton
Published on:
Thu 27 Jun 2013