“Watch Out Now” was the first singles from A Musical Massacre, the 1999 album by East Coast hip hop group The Beatnuts. The song was produced by The Beatnuts and featured materialistic raps by Juju and Psycho Les, as well as a chorus performed by Yellaklaw. The track’s fast-paced Latin beat sampled the Enoch Light’s cover of “Hi-Jack” by Fernando Arbex of the Latin group Barrabas.
“Watch Out Now” was the most commercially successful Beatnuts single. It reached #84 on the Billboard Hot 100 making it the second Beatnuts single to appear on the pop chart, “Off The Books” being the first in 1997. It additionally appeared on the Rhythmic Top 40 chart and Canadian Singles Chart.
In 2002, Jennifer Lopez released “Jenny from the Block”, a single that again sampled “Hi-Jack” and had an obvious resemblance to “Watch Out Now”. The Beatnuts were angry at Lopez and her song’s producers for sampling without permission. The Trackmasters and Cory Rooney, were able to top The Beatnuts’ commercial success with a purportedly unoriginal song. The Beatnuts expressed their displeasure with Lopez and her producers on the 2004 song “Confused Rappers”. On the track, JuJu raps: “You know you haven’t been to the block for a minute getting all the little Latin girls to bite/ When you really can’t sing and you’re no Salma Hayek.”
The whole situation comes down to whether you believed the composers of “Jenny from the Block” used the sample of “Hi-Jack”, without influence of “Watch Out Now” to make an original song.
I think Jenny “from the block” really kept it hood by trying to sample the group without giving them any credit, but eventually she had to cough up some royalties with those rocks that she got.