Back To Mine favourites from connoisseurs of quality music
1. Sometimes (Uhmmah Remix) – Brand New Heavies.
I love this band. This record was released as a double pack 12″ with mixes by Masters at Work and the late great immortal Jay Dee aka J Dilla, formerly of the Uhmmah production team with Q-tip and Ali Shaheed Muhammad. This was a double edge sword with the Uhmmah remix being my favorite. February is Dilla month so I placed this as my number one as a salute to his legacy.
2. Love Will Save The Day – Whitney Houston
Wow, Rest in peace the great Whitney Houston! This is hands down my favorite track by her. John “Jellybean” Benitez was on a rampage in the 80’s making tonnes of hit records for everyone from Paul McCartney and Michael Jackson to Madonna. He produced this song and ironically before Whitney’s passing it’s been heavily on my brain. Now I’ll have even more reason to rock it.
3. Can You Feel It – Mr Fingers
This is one of those tracks I can’t get away from almost 30 years later. I still play it and it always lights up the dance floor. Larry Heard apparently didn’t realize the impact this record would have when it was created. He’s one of my biggest inspirations for making house music.
4. Wrong Way – Georgia Anne Muldrow
Georgia Ann is one of music’s best kept secrets. She is a multi dimensional prodigy with an old soul. Everytime I hear this particular track it sends chills through my bones. The subject matter she speaks on, her vocal performance and production is stellar. If you’re not aware of her work I suggest you get with it.
5. Beat Box – Art of Noise
This brings me back to my B-Boy roots. This record was so ahead of it’s time, yet it still managed to fit right in with the mode of it’s era. Many pop lockers and breakers got down to this jam including myself in my youthful days. I remember having a recording of this on a cassette tape before I bought the record, and I played it so much the tape popped and I had to put it back together with nail polish. That was an old trick. Aahh… the lost days of analog.
6. Love Is The Message – MFSB
Kenny Gamble and Leon Huff gave us this masterpiece in 1973 and it’s probably the most important dance record ever made. It gave birth to house music but was also a staple at block parties in the streets of New York and used as a back drop for mc’s to freestyle over. I play this tune every chance I get. I once ran into Kenny Gamble outside of a railway station in Washington DC, and this LP was the only I had in my bag. You already know what happened next!
7. Smells Like Teen Spirit – Robert Glasper Experiement
There’s already a few covers of this Nirvana classic but this version is the best by far in my opinion. It features Lalah Hathaway on vocals and it takes you on a psychedelic whirlwind before spiraling down smooth polished end. Robert Glasper is genius jazz pianist. I love that he incorporates traditional jazz with hip hop sensibilities keeping it fresh for the younger generation.
8. Cocaine in My Brain – Dillinger
This is one of the most bizarre reggae recordings I’ve ever heard, and I love it! We have Dillinger acting out double personalities as Jim and John conversing about New York City and praising the use of coke saying “i’ve got cocaine burning in my brain.” I always found this song humorous and daring. It was taboo to talk about using hard drums on recordings when this was released. I would love to hear why this was recorded.
9. Sucker MC’s – Run DMC
Timeless material here. This was an absolute game changer. I remember the first day I heard it like it was yesterday. It was probably the first hip hop record I ever heard that just had mc’s, a drum machine and a basic scratch. Prior to that most of the rap records were produced using back up bands replaying whatever was hot at the time, or original instrumentals. It was simple and to the point. Hip Hop needs to get back to simplicity again.
10. Days Like This (DJ Spinna and Ticklah Remix) – Shaun Escoffery
I had no idea when I was working on this remix that it would become the anthem it is today. You know a record is big when people that don’t really follow the underground house music scene knows the song. I’m grateful for it. Ten years later, it’s keeping me very busy.
DJ Spinna, along side Mr Scruff, has mixed the latest Southport Weekender Vol.9 Compilation, along with a brand new remix of Bah Samba’s new ‘Moonlight’ single, both of which are out now!