Back To Mine with DJ Amir

Since their first release in 1974, Detroit based record label  Strata Records has gained a mythical status amongst music fans and crate-diggers alike, despite its relatively short initial lifespan. The seminal, revolutionary label (formed by Kenny Cox, Charles Moore, and others) has been applauded by everyone from Theo Parrish to Gilles Peterson, with it’s emotive raw cuts of Detroit Soul & Jazz becoming the stuff of legend. Following the completion of their successful Kickstarter campaign spearheaded by DJ Amir back in 2020 , DJ Amir and 180 Proof Records now team up with BBE Music  to proudly present ‘Strata Records – The Sound Of Detroit – Reimagined By Jazzanova. With this new full-length project, Berlin based stalwarts Jazzanova have been invited to rework, reinterpret and reimagine some of the standout moments from Strata’s heralded catalogue. And here DJ Amir selects the coolest Back To Mine 10…

1. I absolutely love the Lil Louis mix of the Black magic house classic ‘Freedom (Make It Funky)!  It always sets a party ablaze when I drop it.  The bass line just takes over your body, and you end up bouncing along with the track with no cares or worries!  This is the epitome of 90s house!

2. One of my favorite disco tunes is Lorraine Johnson’s version of ‘The More I Get, The More I Want’  (12” version).  This is a tune is that definitely deep, yet, familiar at the same time.  Her version of the Teddy Pendergrass classic is in a lot of ways more soulful and loving. Her powerful vocals really make you believe her!  Plus, a near-mint copy of the original 12” goes for at least 500 gbp!

3. In keeping with the disco mode, I really love Dimitri from Paris’ mix of the Love Committee classic, ‘Just As Long As I Got You’. I am a straight sucker for the Philly Sound with killer baselines and strings. And the vocals are just as killer

4. Another deep house track that always gets the crowd hyped is Zev Beckford’s ‘Forget The World’.  Without sounding too cliché, it really does have such an infectious bass line that will have you moving your feet and snapping your neck to the groove.

5. Of course, I gotta add a salsa joint in here.  My people from Boston, the Whiskey Barons, took the Joe Bataan classic ‘Fuego” somewhere really wonderful. Even for people who feel intimidated by Salsa music because they don’t know how to dance to it, straight lose their inhibitions and dance their asses off!

6.  Whenever I am spinning a party that allows me to be a bit freer, I love to drop disco jazz.  One, in particular, is the Norman Connors tune ‘Mr. C’.  Although the average party-goer doesn’t know the tune, they still dance like there’s no tomorrow. Gotta love horns and I always have a lot of Shazaming going on lol!

7. Another great disco jazz song I love to spin is Charles Earland’s ‘Over and Over’ (12” disco version).  This superbly produced track by Randy Mueller of Brass Construction fame is a stone-cold killer deep groove!  This track was built for that sweaty basement vibe party!

CHARLES EARLAND: "OVER & OVER" [Rafael Charres 12'' Remix]

8. Of course, every DJ has their bathroom break record and mine is Fela Kuti’s‘ Roforofo Fight’. It’s just long enough for me to hit the bathroom and still come back to enjoy the song. I honestly get goosebumps when listening to the rhythm section go to town on this joint!  This is definitely my favorite Fela song to spin out!

9.  Another Afrobeat cut I love to spin is the Ogyatana Show Band-‘Disco Africa’. This is such a deep rhythm with soul-stirring drums, bass lines, and vocals. Infectious doesn’t even begin to describe how dope this track is!

10. Lastly, to sneak in whenever I can, Kai Alce’s Distinctive remix of ‘Into Your Story (Jeremy Ellis).  Man, what a track!  From the 1st kick, it ignites the dance floor!  Big Up to the homies Kai and Jeremy Ellis!