Monday, November 30, 2009

Week 27: Quebecois Disco

This one is for Grammar Hammer, who got all excited about Lime when I announced the Hi-NRG tape, only to be cruelly deprived of even a SINGLE Lime song. And for the people who came to the show in Québec this weekend.

Most people aren't aware of this, but for a brief period in the 1980s Montreal was like the WORLD CAPITOL OF DISCO. Or one of a handful of capitols, anyway. This was right after everything disco-related in New York clubland and the US record industry had ground to a halt and become terribly unhip (the so-called "Death of Disco", to hear rock critics speak of it), but before Europe's Hi-NRG and Eurobeat scenes really took over. It was a weird transitional phase, wherein electronics gradually took over for live instruments—a crucial step on the road from disco to house.

Much like its close relative Italo-disco, a lot of the Québécois Disco stuff is still big with house DJs here in Chicago. I found out about it through bargain-bin shopping as I was growing up in Kansas City, and it's always been one of my very favorite musical styles.
And before you discophobes start yelping: Yes, it's corny. Yes, the lyrics are ridiculous. Yes, it's saccharine and blatantly commercial and synthetic and manufactured and all that junk we're taught to hate about music. But it's also amazing. It's really forward-thinking. And INSANELY catchy. Enjoy.

Chrissy's Year of Mixtapes Week 27: Quebecois Disco
  1. Suzy Q; Get Into The Funky Music Now (J.C. Records, 1982)
  2. Karen Silver; Nobody Else (Quality Records Ltd., 1981)
  3. Nightlife Unlimited; Do Me Tonight (Unidisc, 1979)
  4. Nancy Martin; Can't Believe (Neige, 1982)
  5. Misty Lane; Energy (Celsius, 1983)
  6. Lime; Don't You Wanna Do It (Matra, 1984)
  7. Motion; Don't Stop (Tojo, 1983)
  8. Lime; You're My Magician (Matra; 1981)
  9. Gino Soccio; Dancer (Warner Bros., 1979)
  10. Bob-A-Rella; Spend The Night (Channel, 1979)
  11. Carol Jiani, Ask Me (Matra, 1982)
  12. Sweet Brandy; Stoned Love (J.C. Records, 1982)
  13. Lime; I Don't Wanna Lose You (Matra, 1984)
  14. Jade; I'm Gonna Get Your Love (Disconet Remix) (Rams Horn, 1982)
  15. Sunbelt; Spin It (Rio, 1982)
  16. Kebekelektrik; Magic Fly (Tom Moulton Mix) (Salsoul, 1977)
  17. Lime; Give Me Your Body (Matra, 1984)
  18. Vera; Baby Won't You Dance With Me (Matra, 1982)
  19. Trans-X; Living On Video (Illusion, 1983)
  20. Susan Stevens; This Is Love (Tojo, 1983)
  21. Kendra; Helping Myself (Dub) (J.C. Records, 1983)
  22. Denis LePage; Magnum (Celsius, 1979)
  23. Nightlife Unlimited; Disco Choo Choo (Howard Merit Mix) (Unidisc, 1979)
  24. Jump; Does It Feel Good (Unidisc, 1979)
  25. Ann Joy; Love Now Hurt Later (Unidisc, 1978)
  26. Voggue; Roller Boogie (Celsius, 1981)
  27. Lime; Help Yourself (Matra, 1982)
  28. Susan Stevens; Boogie Walk (Rams Horn, 1983)
NEXT WEEK: Knockin' Boots.

Monday, November 23, 2009

Week 26: Classic Ragga Jungle

Ok, first things first. I AM HALF-WAY DONE. One half-year of mixtapes successfully hammered out. wheee!

Anyhoo, to mark the half-way point I figured I'd throw in a mix that a lot of people have been asking for (droon, joe joe, matthew e., and others)—a mix of ragga jungle. This is really the genre that got me started as a touring DJ / producer in the global sense: my first releases were ragga jungle records, and my first international gigs were ragga jungle gigs (hi guido & jak & tim & beni!)

So yeah, I decided to throw together a mix of classic ragga jungle tunes.
For those of you wondering what the hell "ragga jungle" even means, let me break it down into its components:
Jungle music is a fast, breaks-oriented, bass-heavy genre of British dance music that emerged in the early '90s and later evolved into drum & bass, UK garage, grime, dubstep, bassline, & UK funky.

Ragga is another word for the big, brash, hip-hop influenced dancehall reggae of the 1990s—the stuff where the vocals sound a lot more like rapping than traditional reggae singing.

Add those together & there you go.

It was pretty big in the early-mid-1990s (I'm using "pretty big" in the same sense that dubstep is "pretty big" right now), and its heavy use of reggae samples made it somewhat divisive in the proper reggae scene. As a fun little side note, here are two dancehall tunes from 1995 (both on the WigWam riddim by A-Class Crew) that demonstrate the controversy jungle caused in the UK reggae scene:

Starkey Banton; Jungle Bungle
Tenor Fly; Don't Dis The Jungle

And now here's the mix. Oh, and for the people who are undoubtedly going to be all "WHERE IS CONGO NATTY?!?!", I'm basically limiting myself to tracks that came out in 1994 and 1995. A mix of newer / second-wave ragga jungle will come later. It will include Congo Natty, so calm down already.

Chrissy's Year of Mixtapes Week 26: Ragga Jungle

  1. Greenwood; Hold It Down (Inner City Dance)
  2. DMS & The Boneman X; Sweet Vibrations (FX Recordings)
  3. M-Beat feat. General Levy; Incredible (Renk)
  4. The New Cru feat. General Pecos; Run Come (Labello Blanco)
  5. Bounty Killer & Beenie Man; Borderline Mobster (Sensi Crew Remix) (Greensleeves)
  6. The Dream Team aka Bizzy B & Pugwash); Stamina (Suburban Base)
  7. Hardware; Yout Man (Frontline)
  8. Skeng Gee; Connections (Marvellous Cain Remix) (Suburban Base)
  9. Firefox & 4 Tree; Warning (Powder Mix) (Philly Blunt)
  10. Smokey Joe; Gimmi My Gun (Desired State Remix) (Labello Blanco)
  11. L Double; Little Rollers vol. 1 (Flex)
  12. Barrington Levy & Mega Banton; She's Mine (Sensi Crew Remix) (Greensleeves)
  13. General Degree; Papa Lover (Stretch Remix) (Jet Star Records)
  14. Remarc; R.I.P. (Suburban Base)
  15. Dextrous & Teebone; Selectors Roll VIP (Subliminal / unreleased)
  16. Conquering Lion; Code Red (X Project)
  17. R-Type; Love Is Blind (Hyper Records)
  18. Shy FX & UK Apachi; Original Nuttah (S.O.U.R.)
  19. Chakademus & Pliers; Gal Wine Drum & Bass (Greensleeves)
  20. Dextrous; Wanted Dead Or Alive (Subversive)
  21. Marvellous Cain; The Hitman (Dream Team Remix) (Suburban Base)
  22. Cutty Ranks; Limb By Limb (DJ SS Remix) (Suburban Base)
  23. Ellis D feat. The Specialist; Nice Up Your Scene (White House)
  24. Studio 1; Dancing Feet (Strictly Underground)
  25. Dawn Penn & Bounty Killer; You Don't Love Me No No No (Ambient Jungle Lick) (Greensleeves)
  26. Barrington Levy; Here I Come (Ridley Don Remix) (Greensleeves)
  27. Mad Cobra; Tek Him (B-Line Remix) (Jet Star)
  28. Shy FX; Simple Tings (S.O.U.R.)
NEXT WEEK: Quebecois Disco.

Monday, November 16, 2009

Week 25: New Disco

Over the last decade-and-a-half there's been a big disco revival afoot in the dance music (and, really, rock music) communities. Maybe you've noticed: since about 1997, a lot of music has borrowed really heavily from disco, whether it's French house acts like Daft Punk or Dimitri from Paris, or dance rock bands like The Rapture, The Juan MacLean, or even Franz Ferdinand, or next-big-thing dance genres like Electroclash & Blog House. I'm a huge disco person, but to be frank a lot of the disco-influenced output of the last several years has struck me as pretty obnoxious: unoriginal, derivative, shamelessly trendy, etc. Anyway, I've thrown together a little mix of disco revival stuff I've liked over the last decade. Enjoy!

Chrissy's Year of Mixtapes Week 25: New Disco
  1. DJ Hell & Erlend Øye; Keep On Waiting (International Deejay Gigolo Records, 2003)
  2. MSTRKRFT; Easy Love (Last Gang Records, 2006)
  3. The Rapture; House of Jealous Lovers (Morgan Geist Version) (DFA, 2002)
  4. Ssion; Credit In The Straight World (unreleased, 2009)
  5. The Juan MacLean; One Day (DFA, 2009)
  6. DMX Krew; Lies Inside (Ghostly International, 2002)
  7. Scream Club; I'm Going Crazy (Rock Machine Records, 2006)
  8. Sally Shapiro; He Keeps Me Alive (Extended Mix) (Diskokaine, 2007)
  9. Max Fresh; Intro (Loungin' Recordings, 2005)
  10. Kerrier District 2; Ce Porte (Rephlex, 2006)
  11. Codebreaker; Dream Lover (Disco Demolition, 2008)
  12. Hercules & Love Affair, You Belong (DFA, 2008)
  13. Cosmo Vitelli; Party Day (Disques Solid, 2001)
  14. Ssion; Wolves Eye (Sleazetone, 2008)
  15. The Juan MacLean; You Can't Have It Both Ways (Live) (DFA, 2002)
  16. Low Foney; Glow (Same Soul Different Body Imprint, 2008)
  17. The Polyamorous Affair; Face Control (Manimal Vinyl Records, 2009)
  18. Ssion; Ah Ma (Chrissy Murderbot Remix) (Sleazetone, 2009)
  19. Kerrier District; Let's Dance & Freak (Rephlex, 2004)
  20. Zongamin; Tunnel Music (XL Recordings, 2001)
  21. Bangkok Impact; Premature Ejaculation (Crème Organization,2008)
  22. The Knife; Like A Pen (12" Version) (Rabid Records, 2006)
  23. Miss Kittin & The Hacker; 1000 Dreams (Radio) (Nobody's Bizzness,2009)
  24. Legowelt; 2002 (Ghostly International, 2002)
  25. Alexander Robotnick; Obsession For The Disco Freaks (Fool's Gold, 2009)
  26. Kerrier District; Yesco (Rephlex, 2004)
  27. !!!; Me & Giuliani Down By The School Yard (A True Story) (Touch & Go, 2003)
  28. LCD Soundsystem; Yeah (Crass Version) (DFA, 2003)
NEXT WEEK: Ragga Jungle Classics

Monday, November 9, 2009

Week 24: Ghettotech

This week I've got a tape of Ghettotech, which for you uninitiated folks is a genre of uptempo dance music we have here in the Midwest. The music (and the name "ghettotech" itself) originated in Detroit, and is essentially sped-up Detroit techno with a heavy dose of Miami bass music and Chicago ghetto house influence. It's fast, it's bass-heavy, it's got a lot of dirty words—it's similar to Juke, but there are some key differences that a lot of people overlook: ghettotech tends to stick to either four-on-the-floor style drum patterns or traditional Miami bass electro drum patterns, whereas juke is a lot more all over the place rhythmically; ghettotech makes a lot less use of the tom tom drum as a melodic instrument; and ghettotech tends to be "techier" or more futuristic sounding, whereas juke has a lot more of a pronounced soul, hip hop, and R&B influence. The last few years have seen a lot of music press types failing to understand this distinction, so take note. Anyway, here's the tape!

Chrissy's Year of Mixtapes Week 24: Ghettotech
  1. DJ At Will; Don't Stop
  2. Detroit Grand Pubahs; The Clapper
  3. Santone; D-Tech
  4. Technasia feat. DJ Godfather & DJ Omega; Ghett-O-Freak
  5. Drexciya; Water Walker
  6. Bitch Ass Darius; Bang Dat Butt
  7. Aux 88; We Make Beats
  8. De Jeugd Van Tegenwoordig; Watskeburt (Inst. Remix)
  9. Coon Daddy; Down 4 A Creep
  10. DJ Assault; Deep
  11. Jkamata; I Like 2 Ride U
  12. Mr. Dé; Time Space Scrilla
  13. Disco D; Keys To The Whip
  14. Electric Soul;
  15. DJ Godfather & Coon Daddy; One Time On The Mic
  16. AJ McGhee; Why You Lookin' At Me
  17. DJ Godfather; Get Down
  18. Detroit Grand Pubahs; Ride
  19. Drexciya; Bubble Metropolis
  20. Aux 88; Direct Drive
  21. DJ Marquis; Bounce It
  22. DJ Godfather & Coon Daddy; Player Haters In This House
  23. DJ Assault; Mouth Blew Out
  24. DJ Assault; Weave Pulled Out
  25. DJ Omega; All The Way Down
  26. DJ Guy; Freak It All Night
  27. Craig Diamonds; Freaky Wit U
  28. DJ Baddmixx; White Tees Remix
  29. Los Hermanos; Quetzal
  30. Erotek; Guess Your Weight
  31. Bitch Ass Darius; Ride
  32. DJ Godfather; Let's Go
  33. DJ Godfather; It's Yo Birthday
  34. DJ Guy; The Runner
  35. Blake Baxter; Ride 'Em Boy
  36. DJ Omega; Pop Dat
  37. DJ Godfather & Coon Daddy; I'm Everywhere
  38. Starski & Clutch; Bounce
  39. DJ Assault; Who's Fuckin' Tonight
  40. Mr. Dé & Sixfoe; Throw
  41. DJ Assault; Ass N Titties
  42. Disco D feat. BG; Hottest Of The Hot
  43. Erotek; Jit Shit
  44. Raziek; Shella Ju
  45. DJ Omega; Go For What You Know
  46. DJ Assault; Shake It, Work It
  47. Goon & Koyote; Let Me Lick You Up & Down
  48. DJ Nasty; King of Kings
  49. Coon Daddy; Big Baller
  50. Bryan Cox; Let's Go To Work (Kaptain Kadillac Remix)
NEXT WEEK: New Disco.

Monday, November 2, 2009

Week 23: Hi-NRG

This week I've got a mixtape of one of my personal fave genres: Hi-NRG. This was a style of disco that developed in the late 1970s-early 1980s in San Francisco, New York City, and London. Primarily a gay bar staple, Hi-NRG predicted rave culture in a lot of ways: it was a faster, harder, more synth-driven form of disco, tailor-made to the club drugs in fashion at the gay discos where it developed: cocaine, LSD, amphetamines, poppers, quaaludes, ecstasy, and really just about anything else (but those were the biggies).

As New York Hi-NRG DJ / remixer Casey Jones said in David Diebold's book Tribal Rites, “It was a druggy sound. It was an ‘up’ sound. The whole scene in San Francisco at the time pretty much revolved around ‘up’ drugs. The entire gay disco scene has in fact, since the mid to late seventies, been influenced by music which would complement their drug highs.”

For better or worse, a lot of the clichés that permeate both dance music and gay music were really invented in this era (the down-up-down-up eighth-note bassline; the use of bizarro sweepy synth noises as transition devices; the whole concept of "synth stabs"—those short little synth notes on the off beat—which would later evolve into "putting a donk on it"; and the general upward shift in dance music tempos since the disco era, to name a few). I've started this tape with the tune that solidified the genre's name, and taken it from there. Enjoy!

Chrissy's Year of Mixtapes Week 23: Hi-NRG
  1. Evelyn Thomas; High Energy (Record Shack Record)
  2. Romance f. Jessica Williams; Tie Me Down (Harem Records)
  3. Paul Parker; Right On Target (Megatone Records)
  4. Patrick Cowley; If You Feel It (Megatone Records)
  5. Carol Jiani; Hit 'N' Run Lover (Moby Dick Mix) (Moby Dick Records)
  6. Jessica Williams; (They Call Me The) Queen Of Fools (Passion Records)
  7. Marcia Raven; Catch Me (I'm Falling In Love) (Passion Records)
  8. Hazell Dean; Searchin' (I Gotta Find A Man) (Ian Levine Remix) (Proto Records)
  9. Miquel Brown; So Many Men So Little Time (Record Shack Records)
  10. Sheryl Lee Ralph; In The Evening (Chrissy Re-Edit) (The New York Music Company)
  11. Earlene Bentley & Sylvester; Stargazing (Record Shack Record)
  12. Evelyn Thomas; Masquerade (Record Shack Records)
  13. Nina Schiller; Without Your Love (R.E.M.I.X.) (Moby Dick Records)
  14. Sylvester; Don't Stop (Megatone Records)
  15. Tina Fabrique; Alive With Love (Prism Records)
  16. Liquid Gold; Don't Panic (Polo Records)
  17. Modern Rocketry; I'm Not Your Steppin' Stone (Megatone Records)
  18. Charade; Break Me (Hi-NRG Mix) (Passion Records)
  19. Climax Orchestra; Interaction (LSD Mix) (Challenge Records)
  20. Sylvester & Patrick Cowley; Do Ya Wanna Funk (Megatone Records)
  21. Modern Rocketry; Thank God For Men (Chrissy Re-Edit) (Megatone Records)
  22. Scherrie Payne; One Night Only (Megatone Records)
  23. Loverde; My World Is Empty (Without You) (Moby Dick Records)
  24. Richie; Whip Up The Dancefloor (Hot & Sticky Mix) (Challenge Records)
  25. Diebold & Co.; US NRG (Aerobics High Impact Mix) (Megatone Records)
  26. Sylvester; Lovin' Is Really My Game (Remix) (Megatone Records)
NEXT WEEK: Ghettotech.