(pic: chiara bautista)
I've been personally collecting music for almost 20 years, maybe more if I count the years I ganked all my dad's good tape dubs of the Beatles, Steely Dan, Creedence, and Cream. My sister and I would make sure we had a blank tape at the ready to record our favorite songs off the radio when they'd come on Rick Dee's Weekly Top 40 on Sundays. Remember the Columbia House hustle? 17 Tapes for a penny? Then a tape in the mail every month that you had to remember to return or get charged? Thanks for all the hair metal, Columbia House and BMG.
My music collection really exploded, really boomed, if you will, when I started going to raves and buying, boosting, sharing, or trading dj mix tapes, those DIY mixtapes with the photocopied tape covers if you were lucky, sometimes so far removed from the original dub that there was no label or cover at all, just a tape in someone's trunk and faith that it was who that dude said it was. There was a guy who ran a company called Fusion Mixtapes and if you sent him a self addressed stamped envelope he sent you a photocopied "catalogue" of all the mixtapes you could buy from him. A lot of them were recordings of dj sets from other raves, little windows into these little underground scenes in Chicago, Detroit, Cleveland, California, Florida, etc. My "rave radius" was pretty much Portland Maine to Washington DC in those days, so it was dope being able to get my hands on mix tapes from cities or towns or countries I'd never visited. In this age of instant gratification and online access, you forget sometimes how much more effort and energy went into maintaining these little scenes back then. We used to use Mission Control, an automated voicemail number that would list the raves in the northeast (Jersey to Maine) each week. Or we'd just hit up Satellite records or Boston Beat or roll through Axis or the Paradise and collect fliers, planning our upcoming roadtrips on the drive home from Boston. And with all that time in the car, we listened to LOTS of mixtapes.
I miss those days, and the music of those days. I was a breaks and jungle fanatic, and probably still have hundreds of mixtapes in boxes just waiting to be converted to digital. If you'd like to relive your 90s rave years as well, or just get a sense of what the hell I'm talking about, check out EZSkankin Mixtapes. They've got a ton of 90s era west coast djs like DJ Dan, Doc Martin, John Howard, and Jeno, plus some great classic Joeski and Onionz mixes. I highly recommend the DJ Dan "Scratch the Bass" mix.
Sometimes when I get to reminiscing about those halcyon days, I feel the breakbeat bug bite. This mix scratches that itch. It's been a while since I did a proper breaks mix, but having enjoyed the mix Triple A recently posted on his site, which is chock full of 90s/early 2000 era big room breaks, I thought I'd switch it up over here at La MoDa and jack up the BPMs, fire up the smoke machine, and get a little warehouse up in here...
1. kid cudi ft. crookers - embrace the martian
2. 2 live crew - party (2 bit thugs badboy bmore 2X2 redub)
3. javier morillas - rock yours
4. maral salmassi - fire gem
5. NAPT - gotta have more cowbell
6. WI:RE - fresh moves (electric soulside mix)
7. slyde - frequency (NAPT remix)
8. evil 9 - they live (dj version)
9. agent k - can't hold back (curtis b remix)
10. n. annan & ed solo - handz up (stanton warriors remix)
11. stanton warriors - blaze (baobinga & ID remix)
12. beat assassins - gunclip
13. prato - hotterdam (mr. no hands remix)
14. plump djs - listen to the baddest
15. plump djs - shifting gears (stanton warriors remix)
16. stanton warriors ft. big daddy kane - get wild (bassbin twins remix)
17. kid sister - pro nails (rusko remix)
18. b. rich ft. rick ross - everyday hustle (ac slater remix)
19. bassbin twins - woppa