As you may have read in our Major Lazer feature from earlier today, Diplo is one seriously hard worker, and he’s got a discography miles long. We picked out a few choice cuts from that long list to get you started.
There’s no denying it that Diplo (aka Wesley Pentz), the Grammy-nominated producer, remixer, and and head honcho of Mad Decent Records, is one of the hardest-working men in the music business. Through unending curiosity and exploration of the world’s vast musical heritages in Jamaica, Africa, the US, and beyond, Diplo has a knack for seamlessly connecting the dots between the global underground and the commercial music mainstream. And in connecting those dots, he’s racked up production credits for MIA, Santigold, Drake, Usher, Snoop Dogg, Beyonce, and Bruno Mars, among many others.
The Hood Internet will be coming to Beatport Live this Friday, May 17. Aaron Brink and Steve Reidell decided in 2007 that it was time for some great mash-ups, and boy did they deliver. Uploading them straight to their own Hood Internet blog, they received an overwhelming response to the tracks and since then the guys have only been getting better. Their genre-defying style is what sets them apart the most. Never afraid to throw a curveball that you wouldn’t expect to work, they love to surprise the crowd.
When the reigning queen of neo-soul, Erykah Badu, conceived of the idea for an electronic project, she enlisted the most talented producers she knew, eager to create a band that would share her same musical values. Inspired by the “cosmic collaborations” of her album New Amerykah Part One, the concept for The Cannabinoids was born in 2010: a musical experiment that would feature a team of phenomenal producers—A1, Picnic, Jah Born, Rob Free, RC Williams, DJ Big Texas, Symbolyc One, and Cleon Edwards—alongside Badu herself. Working with eight laptops, three turntables, six keyboards, four drum machines, a Theremin, and perhaps the team’s biggest weapon, an inimitable chemistry, The Cannabinoids are a live remix production crew, whose music represents the sensational reaction created when the synthetic combines with the organic. Their sound blends elements of hip-hop, funk, and psychedelic, most prevalent in their incredible new beat tape for Beatport which, fittingly, dropped on 4/20. We caught up with Badu, Jah Born, Rob Free, Picnic, and A1 to talk inspirations, the science of addiction, and the chemistry of The Cannabinoids.
Legendary Bay Area DJ and producer Scott Hardkiss (real name Scott Friedel) has died at the age of 43. Along with his musical “brothers” Gavin and Robbie Hardkiss, Friedel became a staple on San Francisco’s dance-music scene in the ’90s, helping to pioneer the west coast sound that still echoes today. Often working under the solo moniker God Within, Friedel later moved to New York, and released his last LP, Technicolor Dreamer, in 2009.
Dearly departed producer and DJ J Dilla (aka Jay Dee; aka James Yancey) definitely garnered more respect posthumously than when he was punching out beats on his MPC for the likes of Slum Village, Madlib, Common, and other hip-hop luminaries. While those in the know considered him a living legend, his legacy certainly lives on well into the years following his untimely lupus-related death in 2006. In fact, it seems like every few months a new documentary pops up in the Detroit ambassador’s honor, and that’s to say nothing of the countless musical releases that have surfaced, including another one just announced today for Moodymann’s Mahogani label.
Some call the music that Bondax make “club-ready pop music.” But whether compared to Disclosure or The xx, it’s clear that the Lancaster, UK-based R&B- and soul-house duo are hitting their stride early, with tracks like “Wet Summer” and their remix of Rudimental’s “Not Giving In” catapulting them into the spotlight. Producers George Townsend and Adam Kaye aren’t even 20 yet, so expect big things—including their latest track, “Gold”—to bubble up throughout the year.
Each month we faithfully bring you a slew of amazing remix and production contests over on Beatport Play. And today, like always, we’re happy to announce the winners of the last batch of competitions. First up, acid-house legend Mr. C (aka Richard West) tells us about the winners of his Producer Challenge.