Friday, February 22, 2008

Proto-mash-ups (2004)

After i had been DJing for a while, i started making promotional demo-CDs (as a DJ is apt to do to get more gigs). i had been making mixtapes for ages, as well as doing occasional live blends, but i felt CDs called for a bit more professionalism, so i decided to add two signature mixes at the beginning and end of the demo. At this point, i was blissfully unaware of 'mash-ups'. i'm sure i had already heard quite a few, but i just considered them to be the kind of mixes that DJs naturally do (in the hip-hop community, they've been called 'blends' for quite a while, but that's another story).

The first was recorded live at a cafe gig on two turntables. It mixes the shakuhachi flute of Kohachiro Miyata with the drums of jazz legend Max Roach. I called it "Honshirabe Waltz". DJ Earlybird a.k.a. Uganda, who i would meet much later at GYBO, described it "like dancing drunk in a rice field". Needless to say, it's quite abstract, and the cafe-owner thought i was bit nuts by starting my set with it.

The second proto-mash-up mixes US3's famous Herbie Hancock-sampling tune "Cantaloop (Flip Fantasia)" with bits of John Coltrane, Eric Dolphy, and a little snippet of Kohachiro Miyata, as well as a voice-over by yours truly. This one was done on the PC with an early version of Acid Pro, which i had already used for making original tracks. Hence, although my first efforts were primitive, i had already entered the world of mash-ups without knowing it. Enjoy the Beginner's Mind!


Honshirabe Waltz (Kohachiro Miyata vs. Max Roach) Download *
& Cantaloconi (US3 vs. John Coltrane vs. Eric Dolphy)

(cover by Klaudia Gottwald)

* As featured on the MashAnthology double LP!

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