1. Breaking News - Rush Hour (Quadrat Beat Remix)
2. Plastic Shell - Dead End
3. Gigi Barocco - The Rhythm
4. Stereofunk - Captain Funk (Fukkk Offf Remix)
5. Drumattic Twins - Don’t Be So Drumattic
6. Plump DJs - System Addict
7. Sporty-O - Guestlist (Keith MacKenzie and DJ Fixx vs. Angel Alanis Original Mix)
8. Robosapiens - Chasing the Buzz
9. The Autobots - Seconds Out
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Okay, so below (after the proverbial jump) is a short rant about putting together a mix. If you’re not interested in the creation of DJ sets and just came to hear some breaks, no problem, that’s why I put the player up top this time. For everyone else, allow me to geek-out for a second…
Putting together a mix, even a short one, can be a frustrating experience. Sometimes, even though you’ve got all these great new songs and you can’t wait to bring them all together into a set, they just don’t want to work together. They’re in different keys, genres, energy levels… for one reason or another they just won’t mix. When this happens DJing isn’t fun, it’s like pulling teeth. You keep trying out different tracks with the hope that one of them will bring it all together, maybe experimenting with tracks you don’t even like all that much but you’d settle for them if they helped you get through to the others. This sucks. When it happens, often it’s best just to scrap the whole thing and wait for some new songs to come along before you try again.
And then occasionally you’re lucky enough to have the opposite experience. All the new tracks that you just can’t wait spin together just happen to compliment each other and the mixes present themselves with hardly any effort at all. It’s like dropping puzzle pieces on a table and watching them land right-side up and in the correct orientation. All you have to do is snap them together and you’re done.
This mix was one of the latter cases. Most of these tracks I acquired in the last couple weeks, and I was surprised to find how well they all fit. Almost the entire set came together in less than an hour. What’s even more fortunate about this is that since I haven’t spun nu skool breaks in several years (hence the name of the mix) I didn’t have that many tracks to work with. If I got stuck, I’d be STUCK. Luckily I only needed one bridge track* and I found that one pretty fast.
I’d be curious to hear if other DJs have similar experiences when trying to record demo sets; either the set from hell that just won’t come together, or that effortless flow with a set that mixes itself. If you’re a DJ reading this, let me know. Maybe I’m over-thinking it and I just spend too much effort on this shit. In fact I’m quite sure that’s the case.
* A bridge track is what Jay and myself (and other DJs, I’d suspect) call one of those last few songs you need when creating a set. This track needs to serve as a “bridge” between one finished block of your mix and another. You can be 95% done with the set, but find yourself stuck trying to find that last song that will bring you from the start to the finish. If you’re astute you can sometimes tell which track in DJ’s set is a bridge track because it may be short and drum-focused (making it easy to mix), or the mixes on either end of that song may not be as smooth as the rest, just there to get the job done. I’ll leave you to guess which track is the bridge in this mix.