Friday, 4 September 2009

Brooklyn's In The House (1990 retro trip!)

Now is the time for a big mix.
It all started with a discussion on discogs about Centerfield Assignment.
What happened was this discussion ignited a chain reaction in my mind about links between tracks, and raised a number of ideas that had been brewing consciously and subconsciously for god-knows how long.
The mix is 2 hours and 9 minutes, and would have been longer had it not been so late and I got tired - I could have continued mutating the theme and working the decks with old tunes, but the original theme worked its course.
So Here's the lowdown on what was going on, first up the tracklist:

Sueno Latino - Sueno Latino (Derrick May Remix)
Flowmasters - Let It Take Control (Original / Bass Beats / Heartbeat Mix / Judge Jules Mix)
Flowmasters - Energy Dawn
Too Nice - I Git Minze
Hard House (Todd Terry) - Check This Out
Swan Lake - In The Name Of Love
Lake Eerie - Sex 4 Daze
Musto & Bones - This will Be Mine
Musto & Bones - Te Quiero
Todd Terry Project - Back To The Beat
Reese & Santonio - The Sound (Acid Remix / Exclusive Motor City Mix)
Reese & Santonio - Rock To The Beat
D-Shake - Techno Trance (Revisited)
Looney Tunes - Another Place, Another Time
Looney Tunes - You Are The One
Looney Tunes - As Long As I Got You
Musto & Bones - All I Want Is To Get Away
Bones & Musto - We Call It Techno (Brooklyn New Beat Mix)
Flowmasters - House The Crowd
Doug Lazy - Let It Roll (Dub)
Twin Hype Do It To The Crowd
Centerfield Assignment - Mi Casa (Original Radio / Mi Condo / Mi Garage)
Twin Hype - For Those Who Like To Groove
Nasih & M-D-Emm - Get Hip To This (Frankie Bones Manic Mix)
LNR - Work It To The Bone (Chicago Clubhouse Mix)
Reese - You're Mine (Bad Boy Bill Hardcore Hip House Mix)
Farley Jackmaster Funk feat Precious Red - Think
Mundo Muzique - Andromeda

Now, the thinking behind it.

Well the discussion thread on discogs not only opened up the ideas in my head about Centerfield Assignment and Twin Hype, the seeds of which were sown as early as 2005 , but it touched on links to tracks from Frankie Bones. And one of the mixes of "Mi Casa" has a sample of the cartoon Looney Tunes theme, clearly a reference to the Frankie Bones Looney Tunes EPs (I included the sample somewhat clumsiliy in the mix). The mix is all about links - the majority of the tracks in the mix are linked to their neighbours one way or the other.

I actually originally was going to start with "Let it take control", another Bones creation (with TommyMusto), but in the spirit of my "links" theme, I felt that it was important to include the track that provided the musical source for the major part of that tune, so Derrick May's mix of Sueno Latino had to take pole position.

That Flowmasters tune is so good and has so many versions that I decided to make an epic journey of it rather than just take the obvious route and move on to the next tune, and I also took the opportunity to include the Third World sampling "Energy Dawn" that originated on the same EP.

There is a vocal sample "I git hiiiiigh" in Energy Dawn that reminded me of Too Nice's "I Git Minze" and while it doesn;t seem to be lifted directly I'm still sure there is a common link here, maybe Bones & Musto stretched the sample or used a different mix. the Too Nice tune also came out around the same time as the Twin Hype tunes and these have always sat together in my mind as well on the shelf.

While in the mix I realised that I could dredge up 20 years of memories and I hit upon the right link- the bassline and in fact whole basis of "I Git Minze" is a Todd Terry Track - "Check This Out" credited to "Hard House". In the mix it goes...

More Todd Terry follows, with "Swan Lake"'s "In The Name Of Love" which includes a Thompson Twins sample!

The next link is a bit more obscure - Lake Eerie is Frankie Bones & Lennie Dee and apparently their inspiration for this tune (largely based around the bassline from Raze "Break 4 Love" - geddit?) from Todd Terry's slew of sample-based tunes at that time (Royal House, Black Riot, the above mentioned Hard House & Swan Lake, Orange Lemon, Todd Terry Project and even "Masters At Work" (There is a whole 'nother history around this name!!!)

The Bones connection continues (in fact he seems to form an axis about which this mix rotates) with a couple of tunes from Musto & Bones - This Will Be Mine and Te Quiero. the real treat from this particular release is yet to come however...

Te Quiero uses a bassline from some obscure 89 Detroit techno tune, but I just couldn't recall which one, so I went to another tune that used the same trick - Todd Terry's "Back To The Beat" which used a bassline from Kevin "Reese" Saunderson's "The Sound" and so enraged Saunderson that he bootlegged the Terry track and released it alongside a reissue of "The Sound" itself on one of his own EPs as "Back To The Beat (With "The Sound") in order to publicise the fact that his bassline had been ripped off.

So it's only natural that I follow this with "The Sound", in two different versions in this case, followed by another Kevin Saunderson creation, "Rock To The Beat", a very influential and important track with its intense, dark and eerie atmosphere.

"Rock To the Beat" was sampled by Frankie Bones & Lennie Dee on the first "Looney Tunes" EP to create "Another Time Another Place, and this was subsequently sampled by D-Shake to create "Techno Trance" - the (to me) superior B-side to D-Shake's "Yaaaaah!". I dropped from "Rock To The Beat" into "Techno Trance" and then back to the Looney Tunes track, still confused about the provenance of the sample at the time I committed this mix to posterity! My confusion was eliminated by another exchange on discogs. :)

I moved through some more of may favourites from the two Looney Tuens EPs next. "You Are The One" is a piece of simple electro perfection, a love song created with primitive sample technology - awesome. And I suppose "As Long as I got you" could be a love song too - this was ubiquitous that year and even got covered by euro outfit "101" in an indistinguishable mix. Such big tune had to be floowed by another, and "All I want is to get away" is such a tune, with those massive "Landlord" stabs and just sucha a great structure and feel! Only topped by "We Call it techno", which if it didn't lay the "techno bass" blueprint for the likes of Aux 88 then its only because they were following exactly the same cues. funnily enough, when I hear this in 90, I didn't think it sounded like "Techno" but I was not at that time aware of the link back to the "electro" of cybotron and was more fixated on the minimal 4/4 stuff that was current at the time.

After that peak, I just let things ease off, a breather for the dancefloor if you will, with the mellowest track from the Flowmasters EP "House The Crowd". Which of course sampled from Doug Lazy "Let It Roll", included here in its dub version. That in turn finally led to Twin Hype's "Do It To the Crowd" due to similar style.

So here I dropped 3 versions of Centerfield Assignement's "Mi Casa". this tune appears in a break at the end of "Do It to the Crowd", and I attempted to extend this break ,somewhat clumsily in restrospect. Meanwhile "For those Who Like To Groove" uses the same bassline as "Mi Casa" so was the obvious choice here.

from there we have entered hip-house territory, but keeping the Brooklyn Feel, I adopted Frankie Bones' mix of M-D-Emm vs Nasih's"Get Hip To This. M-D-Emm was a UK outfit including Dave Lee (aka Joey Negro aka Jakatta) and Mark "Ruff Ryder" both of whom went on to be involved in all sorts of projects. This track sampled a vocal "Let's Work" from "Work It To the Bone", a Chicago house track from LNR. I then continued the hip-house theme, but referencing earlier points in the mix, with Reese's "You're Mine" in the Bad Boy Bill remixed "Hardcore Hip House" version featuring the never-to-be-seen-again MC Slo Mello Flo.

At this point I couldn't resist dropping one of my faviourite Hip-House-influenced tracks "Think" from Farley Jackmaster Funk, the Chicago House originator who brought us "Love Can't Turn Around. This tune is a remake of a James-Brown JB's Band based track by Lyn Collins, which provided the "yeah -- woah" breakbeat that was so popular in 87-89 and was of course re-used in this tune.

At this point mI had strayed a bit far from my original theme, and the tangent was developing fast, while the hour was getting late and I was feeling the effects, so I decided to mellow out and drop my closing track, a classic from Mundo Muzique - Andromeda, held by many as a key tune of the era. unfortunately this last mix is marred by a key clash as well as a lack of obvious continuity, but under the circumstances I am fairly happy with it.

Listening back to the whole mix, I think it works well, and provides a great snapshot of a time almost 20 years ago, when so much was happening, I could probably do another half-dozen 2-hour mixes and still not cover all my favourite tracks from this period of time where the music was moving so fast that every big new tune would spawn what seemed like a whole raft of samples, copies/influences or even a new sub-genre!

Here's the link


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