Tag Archives: Remixes

Another set of remixes from Sizzla’s Born a King

unnamedFollowing Sizzla’s fresh and critically acclaimed album Born a King comes the fourth instalment of remix EP’s from that particular set.

Champion Sound was one of many highlights on Born a King. The original tune is recorded over Mista Savona’s brutal Soundclash riddim and features Sizzla at his finest along with veteran singer Errol Dunkley.

Champion Sound EP, which drops on September 9, comes stacked with classic roots reworks on the original Soundclash riddim, with vocals provided by Burro Banton, Iyashanti and Johnny Clarke & Determine. The Johnny Clarke and Determine combination is a roaring version of Clarke’s legendary African Roots.

The riddim also gets a remix treatment from a variety of producers working in several different genres, including drum & bass, jungle, dubstep, R&B and electro-oriented funk.

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Seven deadly Major Lazer remixes by Mungo’s Hi Fi

artworks-000067560644-8gumtm-originalScotland’s own Mungo’s Hi Fi have remixed five Major Lazer tunes. They have re-shaped them, re-structured them, re-built them and now released them for free over at Soundcloud.

The results are smashing, intoxicating and very enjoyable. Just listen to the ska version of Busy Signal’s energetic Watch Out For This (Bumaye), the digi-reggae version of Get Free, featuring Amber from U.S. rockers Dirty Projectors, or the rocksteady-tinged Smooth Sailing with Mr. Williamz carrying the swing.

Check the Soundcloud link here and get a taste.

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Several treats from Jahdan Blakkamoore

Jahdan Blakkmoore – one of Brooklyn’s finest reggae singers – dropped his sophomore album Babylon Nightmare in December last year, to wide critical acclaim. The album included the sweet single All Comes Back to One.

Now production crews Lustre Kings and LionDub International are releasing a remix EP of All Comes Back to One, which includes versions with influences from dubstep, drum & bass, one drop and nu-soul. The remix duties are handled by Nate Mars, Potential Badboy, LionDub, Nick Fantastic and Ticklah. The funky and soulful version BoBos Remix is available as free download. Check it here.

If that wasn’t enough, DJ Theory has just put out the refreshing Quick Money for free download, a tune full of reggae, hip-hop and soul. It uses a sample from Amadou & Mariam’s Sabali – also used by Nas & Damian Marley for the mellow Patience – and comes with a lethal soca version courtesy of So Shifty. Check both tunes here.

Thanks to The 45 Shootout for the heads up.

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Reggaemani’s top ten mash-ups

Mashing genres has been a favourite topic on Reggaemani lately. Dancehall star Busy Signal goes beyond his genre and Toussaint successfully combines soul and reggae. Another way of mixing genres is through mash-ups – taking bits of songs to make a new tune. This is a nice way of introducing genres to a new audience and has been made popular by Mark Vidler and others.

It starts with the unmistakable organ of Take A Ride rhythm. But something is different. The tempo is a bit higher. Then Marvin Gaye starts singing “Mother, Mother”, the first words in his classic What’s Going On. This is certainly not Truths & Rights by Johnny Osbourne. It’s something new, something fresh.

And this is what a mash-up is all about. “Presenting the songs in a new light”, as DJ and producer Al Fingers put it in an interview earlier this summer with Reggaemani.

A mash-up is at its best when it adds something new and when it reinvents the tunes used. It has to be unique, but at the same time well executed. The best mash-ups are often those that follow the chord progression, are in the same key and don’t mess with the pitch too much.

Many DJs and producers that make mash-ups seem to have no musical boundaries. Max Tannone, for example, said in an interview with Reggaemani that he recommends trying whatever sounds good.

I think the weirdest combinations are usually the best, like Jr Blender’s brilliant mashing of hardcore deejay Bounty Killer with 80’s British synthpop trio Bronski Beat.

I’ve collected mash-ups for some time and can easily say that they’re usually fillers on the dance floor and have also lured one or two of my friends into reggae music. It can just as easily go the other way, like when Bost & Bim have introduced Usher and other hip-hop/soul artists to a reggae crowd.

Below I’ve compiled my ten favourite reggae mash-ups. These gems certainly present the tunes in a new light and give them a new dimension.

Producer – song title (original performers)

10. Nuff Wish Crew – Hammy’s Theme (Anthony Hamilton vs. G Corp)
9. DJ Shepdog – No, No, No (Mama Don’t Like You) (Dawn Penn vs. Alborosie & I Eye)
8. Max Tannone – Mr. Universe (Mos Def vs. Observer All Stars)
7. Nuff Wish Crew – African Billie (Michael Jackson vs. Joe Gibbs)
6. Al Fingers – What’s Going On (Marvin Gaye vs. Johnny Osbourne)
5. Nuff Wish Crew – Sensi Spice (Alozade, Mr. Easy & Richie Spice vs. Dr Dre)
4. Jr Blender – Ghetto Gladiator (Bounty Killer vs. Bronski Beat)
3. Max Tannone – In My Math (Mos Def vs. Michael Prophet)
2. J Star – No Diggity (Blackstar vs. Sound Dimension)
1. Jr Blender – Rougher RMX (Cocoa Tea, Home T & Cutty Ranks vs. Black Eyed Peas)

Many thanks to DJ Axxel of Axxionpack Sound for introducing me to the great works of Jr Blender.

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