September 13, 2013


Two great things about growing up in the 80’s, when Hip Hop and House music were young and DJ culture was just coming into it’s own, was one the sense of community and two the effort DJs would put into spectacle of performance. Hip Hop DJ battles were main events, talked about for years like one would talk about Wrestlemania or some big Heavyweight boxing match. And these were friendly battles which did not devolve into actual beefs between the DJs like the ones we see way too much of these days on Twitter between Hip Hop and even EDM DJs.

In the House scene it wasn’t so much about the battle as it was finding ways to throw as much variety into the mix and make people reach a physical high that bursts into the spiritual level, yet these DJs did perform some physical feats of their own and were famous for marathon sets that would span whole weekends and more. All this was done for the sheer spectacle, but also it was more about creativity than posturing, and more importantly about advancing the entire scene.

These days the scene is overflowing with creativity, however the spectacle is not as big. The DMC Championship is great and truly the only real place left where you can experience real deal DJ battles. There is nothing like the intensity a crowd feels when two DJs with no machines or pre-programmed music, nothing but records, their dexterous fingers and their quick reactionary minds go at it toe to toe, where one record skipping or one wrong slip of the fingers can derail their whole set. However, the DMC battles are so underground and so niche for some reason, that the wider DJ scene fails to really catch on. Sad really.

In dance music, we have festivals and they are great too, but if, and that’s a big if, the DJ is actually playing live, he/she is mostly just playing a series of songs back to back, the real deft ones playing three maybe four decks at a time. In my opinion, in the House music/EDM scene the most creative DJs are the ones who remix and reprogram music live. Yet, how many of these DJs dare deviate from their playlists or pre programmed sound banks to play a song from a genre of music their fan base is not familiar with, something borderline unsafe, and do it in a way that not only introduces them to something new but in a way that will actually sneak up on them and surprise them while keeping them on their ride up to that spiritual plane? Not many, right?

All hope is not lost however, there are still plenty of DJs out there pushing the envelope and bringing back the spectacle of it all, which is why when I heard about the following mix in which DJ Bad Boy Bill, a serious turntablist and past DMC contender in his own right and producer and remixer extraordinaire and GRAMMY nominated Richard Vission teamed up to take on 8 decks and throw 126 songs at us in under one hour I couldn’t wait to hear it. Featuring big room EDM, Hip Hop, R&B, Alt Rock, House, and more this mix does more in under an hour than many DJs do in an entire weekend. This is why though we usually believe the more mixes the better in our WeekendMix and usually try to feature two or more mixes, this weekend we’re featuring just one. Sometimes less is more, even when this less is really more, a lot more, get it? No? Doesn’t matter. Press play and you will. Peace.




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