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Cultural Mash-up Goes Global
Cameron Sinclair, 19 Nov 04

4_deck_mashup.jpgThe Kleptones, Lenlow, Go Home Productions, McSleazy, Miss Frenchie, Loo & Placido are all names that you may not be familiar with and certainly not found in your local Virgin Megastore but these purveyors of the musical mash-up (or in some circles bastard pop) are finding their way into ipods around the globe. Although these artists are testing the boundaries of copyright law, they are certainly cultural WorldChangers.

These DJs are moving on from just mashing up the odd single or public official and reworking full albums. After the much sought after Grey Album by DJ DangerMouse, who mixed the Beatles White Album with the Jay-Z Black Album, there is a new crop of ascenders to the throne. Some of the best 'albums' out there right now include A night at the Hip Hopera (Queen), Parkspliced (Blur), London Booted (The Clash), Yoshimi Tackles The Hip Hop Robots (Flaming Lips) and The Pwodigy (The Prodigy).

Even more intriguing, a number of these artists are venturing into the social arena by becoming modern day 'robin hoods' by asking listeners to donate to charities if they download mash-up tunes. War Child, Cancer Research UK and the Christopher Reeve Foundation have all ended up being recipients of these masters creativity.

This musical art is now on the verge of going mainstream as MTV Europe (sorry America) has MTVMash and artists like David Bowie, David Byrne, Gilberto Gil and the Beastie Boys (through the Wired/Creative Commons CD) are all encouraging mash-up artists to remix their work. Folks are even asking to take it one step further and mash the planet - although others are weary of culture jamming. Some of the best hip-hop is coming out of Southern Africa right now, could we be seeing some global/cultural mash-ups in the not too distant future?

---

Some of the most prolific artists are based in Europe however here in the states make your way to San Francisco for Bootie or Mash Ave in Boston to see new kings (and queens) of the turntable. If you feel like learning to mix I recommend spending the weekend in the "get your bootleg on" message boards.

Ok, I'm off to stick 'Sweet Child O' Ravi' on the itunes...

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Comments

While mash-ups are great, 'mash the planet' is lousy, inefficient activism. It's just culture jamming, and culture jamming doesn't work. I had more to say on the subject here:

http://www.darrenbarefoot.com/archives/001387.html


Posted by: Darren on 19 Nov 04

Great one, Cameron. The "Public Official" link alone is priceless.


Posted by: Jamais Cascio on 19 Nov 04

Lenlow rules!


Posted by: Kenlow on 19 Nov 04

Thanks for the mention.
Interesting take on the subject though I don't exactly regard myself as Robin Hood !
Only making tunes for people to enjoy.
When these songs can help others along the way, it's always a bonus.


Posted by: Miss Frenchie on 19 Nov 04

You missed DJ Riko. :-)


Posted by: Paul on 19 Nov 04

America's first mash up site

www.strangely-familiar.com


Posted by: RadioQuita on 19 Nov 04

Nice article. Mash ups & boots has definitely changed my World. Lenlow's more a Batman than a Robin (Hood);-)

I have been spinning bootlegs & mash ups by these artist's on my radio show here in oz (Sydney. Check out the website.


Posted by: DJ Hickory Dickory Doc on 20 Nov 04

Nice article. Mash ups & boots has definitely changed my World. Lenlow's more a Batman than a Robin (Hood);-)

I have been spinning bootlegs & mash ups by these artist's on my radio show here in oz (Sydney. Check out the website.

http://djhdd.sevcom.com


Posted by: DJ Hickory Dickory Doc on 20 Nov 04

this is a new spin on the postmodern revolution that I haven't come across. Good naming. Mash-up. Very snappy, memorable, etc. And a distinct concept as well. You may well bioengineered yourself a meme, there.

anyhoo, you sound like an interesting art-minded fellow. props as is your due.


mr strauss


Posted by: mr strauss on 20 Nov 04

Thanks for the London Booted mention :)


Posted by: Richie on 21 Nov 04

A great DIY remix, mash-up news and tutorial resource:

http://www.beatmixed.com

There are a number of great bootleggers in the US, and the SF bay area has a great scene including myself (DJ Matt Hite), DJ Tripp, A+D, Party Ben, Earworm, Tristan Shout, and host of other very talented folks!


Posted by: Matt Hite on 24 Nov 04



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