the first DJ set of the New Year
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so just exactly how did i get talked into spinning at a bar again, even if only for one night? well, Redlox is a good friend and a great DJ, and seeing as how his partner fuddyKnight was on vacation, he needed someone to fill in and hit me up on email. it was a great excuse for us to finally spin together and we figured it really should happen now. come the month of May, he'll be dealing with a whole other challenge - first time fatherhood - so the clock was ticking down on a turntable collab.
i have to be honest...i was a bit grouchy about the whole thing at first. Redlox had shared with me some typical stories about annoying bar patrons and their equally annoying requests, like having someone ask to play hip-hop while hip-hop was actually playing (but since it was some old school stuff - in this case Lords of the Underground's "Chief Rocka" - the requester didn't know it, which raises the question: do you really want to spin for someone that doesn't even know the history of the music they claim to be theirs?). or having someone request a song, having it cued up on the turntable, and the patron getting pissed because it's not playing. outside of shady bar owners, these are the reasons that have kept me out of bars all this time. i just don't have the patience for that type of BS - rash reactions are likely to ensue. anyway, i was requested to bring a "familiar yet diverse" mix of music to the spot, so i started pulling selections well in advance. as i started to do so, i started getting excited, but not too excited. i have a tendency of building the night up in my head only to have it arrive and be thoroughly disappointed.
so on Saturday night, after celebrating my father-in-law's 62nd birthday with my wife and her family, we made our way into the city from Long Island. arrived a little after 11 p.m., Redlox just got there himself. we set up shop and he spun for the first hour. being at Route 85A was a bit of a time warp for Beth and I; friends of ours had thrown numerous events there in the past. my man Drilla had a pretty successful function there with his boy Receptor a few years back, which i did guest spots at a few times. a strange sort of homecoming, i suppose. if i was going to spin out at a bar again, it was good to be back at a familiar stomping ground.
not even three minutes had passed during Redlox's set before the requests started pouring in. the DJ booth had a curtain and i saw myself having to use it during my set (i never did, though). studying the selections that he was playing for the crowd (UK remix of old De La, classic joint from Human League, new stuff from Gwen Stefani, etc.), i saw what he meant by "familiar yet diverse": this was a crowd that you really couldn't dig too deep on. you had to keep it somewhat simple and keep it moving. i heard a woman request Deee-Lite's "Groove Is In The Heart" while he was on. i kept it in mind for my opening cut. guess i got on around 12:30 a.m. and dropped her request. reportedly, she was on her way out the door, but i caught her just in time. she made her way back and danced for at least the next half hour. (i've said it before and i'll say it again: ALWAYS BRING DEEE-LITE.)
i have to say, the night went better than expected. i was able to play some crowd pleasers, chat with some friendly (and clearly inebriated) partygoers, and even champion some selections i'm really passionate about that other heads may not have heard before. plus a number of my friends came out to support, so that was cool. i spun for about an hour, then Redlox and i traded off three songs apiece or so until the end of the night. we wrapped things up around 3:30 a.m., then drove homeboy uptown to his crib. for the first DJ set of the New Year (and the first out at a bar in months), i was pleased with it.
REDMACE: '05 mix @ ROUTE 85A
saturday, january 15, 2005 - 12:30 a.m.
deee-lite*groove is in the heart*elektra
PD vs. PD*white label
average white band*pick up the pieces*atlantic
bobby byrd*hot pants (i'm coming, coming, coming)*brownstone
deee-lite*when you told me you loved me*elektra
liquid liquid*cavern (the cut chemist rocks a rave in a missile silo remix)*mo'wax (uk)
plant life*luv 4 the world (why they gotta hate?)*counterflow recordings
talking heads*once in a lifetime*sire
the juan maclean*give me every little thing*dfa
liquid liquid*optimo*soul jazz (uk)
bjork*triumph of a heart*elektra
manu dibango*soul makossa*atlantic
dj vadim*london mindstate*ninja tune (uk)
nightcrawlers*push the feeling on (the dub of dooom)*great jones/island
earth people*dance*kool groove
nuyorican soul*you can do it (baby) (bar beats)*giant step/blue thumb
mr. scruff*get a move on*ninja tune (uk)
while tagging with Redlox, i contributed the following selections:
breakestra*cramp your style*stones throw
esther williams*last night changed it all*jazzman (uk)
funkadelic*(not just) knee deep*warner bros.
loleatta holloway*hit and run*gold mind
the fatback band*goin' to see my baby*perception
secret frequency crew*deep blue (eli-173 remix)*counterflow recordings
roy ayers*running away*polydor
zap mama*bandy bandy (carl craig remix)*giant step
prefuse 73*why i love you*warp (uk)
louise vertigo* ou est le femme?*yellow productions (france)
portishead*sour times (lot more)*ffrr/london
bjork*i miss you (dobie rub part one - sunshine mix)*elektra
kurtis rush*george michael gets his freak on*MP3