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Hip-Hop to Dubstep: International Music Styles and the Remix, Part 3 of 7


Above: The Amen Break documentary by Nate Harrison, included in the resource selections below.

List of online resources and music selection for week 3 of Hip-Hop to Dubstep, taught during the summer of 2013 at The New School’s  Media Studies, Department of Communication. I will be releasing brief notes based on my class lectures in the near future. If interested in looking at the actual class webpage with all the weekly selections at once, feel free to peruse this link: http://navasse.net/NS/NCOM3039A/. My notes will not be available on the class webpage, only on each corresponding entry here on Remix Theory. Please note that links may become broken. If and when this happens, the best thing to do is to search for the source by name. And do let me know if anything is broken and I will look into it.

View:
Part 1
Part 2

Week 3
June 17 – 21, 2013
Dub/Disco/Hip-Hop

Music selection and relevant links:

The Joy of Disco – The Joy of Disco:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4zQpMnU6N4o

Amen Break Documentary (by Nate Harrison):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5SaFTm2bcac
The Winstons – Amen Brother:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GxZuq57_bYM

Scratch
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bj1r6u8zLPo&feature=player_embedded

TB-303 Documentary – Bassline Baseline (2005)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TLQwwtjtiY4

The hip hop years part 1:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LhrSlOa2bsA
The hip hop years part 2:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9Qjs771lWnE
The hip hop years part 3:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E_46ig2V74I

Copyright Criminals
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tIoR3PYpduo

 

Music Selection from Jamaica, Dancehall:

Yellowman – King Yellowman (Full Album) 1984
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i11zpqkmupg
Yellowman Reggae Sunsplash 1982
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Ko46_aXW_94

Mr Loverman- Shabba Ranks
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tcWif3u4A0A
House Call (Your Body Can’t LieTo Me), featuring Maxi Priest
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IwtAGWWC9y4

Elephant Man – Willie Bounce
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=r038-tDd8eI

Elephant Man & Wyclef Jean – FIVE-O
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0nNiBgS4bZ0

YouTube Selection of Dancehall:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wH_0_
pijbZY&list=RD02IwtAGWWC9y4

 

Music Selection from UK, Northern Soul:

Frank Wilson – “Do I Love You” (Arguably once the rarest record ever)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xwvpeYiQwss

The O’Jays – I Love Music (1975)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=e_1s2UFc_z8

R Dean Taylor – There’s A Ghost In My House
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=cp62EBeSZUc

Love On A Mountain Top – Robert Knight
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=96eiVUoWzB8

Bobby Freeman – “C’mon And Swim”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1l2agUPZ7lc

The four tops – I can’t help myself – Live HQ
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qXavZYeXEc0

Gloria Jones – “Tainted Love” (1964)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LKUjI_CbIY0
(Not northen soul, but a cover of “Tainted Love,” 1984 sequential mashup with “Where did our Love Go?” by Soft Cell, New Wave version):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=srtuQU20QXA

 

Music Selection from U.S., Disco (before mid-seventies, soul music influenced by the Motown sound):

Viva Tirado Live – El Chicano (1970) 1971 performance:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vxmwPkqkCnk
(
See Kid Frost below under rap for a sample used in a rap song)

Charles Wright & The Watts 103rd Street Rhythm Band “Love Land” (1970)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=sZ0yX05h3IQ

The Friends of Distinction – “Love or Let Me Be Lonely” (1970)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hnEbZjOhUQU

Manu Dibango – “Soul Makossa” (1973)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=w2jYjUiulMQ

Kook and the Gang – “Jungle Boogie” (1974)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=QHGOO73Gxg4

MFSB TSOP The Sound Of Philadelphia (1974)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-3nPLfG9gZY

Van McCoy – “The Hustle” (1975)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wj23_nDFSfE

Sylvester – You Make Me Feel (mighty real)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=oG2ixYJ79iE

James Brown – The Original Disco Man DISCO (1979)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OHQJDbeT1lM

Village People – “In the Navy”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=InBXu-iY7cw

Village People – “Just a gigolo”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=1FvVcagZln0

Donna Summer ” Love To Love You Baby ”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=X6iTciIqLxM
Donna Summer I Feel Love [Extended Dance Edit] (1977)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ljxm3NsnVI0
Donna Summer – I Feel Love (Patrick Cowley Megamix)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Q1km3Fbeo0w

Le Freak – Chic (1978)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DbzooE7jtiE
“Le Freak (House/Funk Deep Remix)”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=v9e1REw6WFY
Chic Megamix – in memory of Bernard Edwards (mixed in the tradition of the old days with two turntables)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AMlhtKw_Sds

More, More More – Andrea True Connection
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RlJGrIyt-X8

Bee Gees – “Staying Alive” (1979)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=I_izvAbhExY

Bee Gees Megamix (Straight on two turntables, as it would be done at the club)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=dxZckhvwsoM

 

Music Selection from U.S. (Electro-funk/techno-funk, or simply… “funk” as it was called and known to DJs playing it.)

Three key tracks that informed funk in the eighties:
Babe Ruth’s “The Mexican,” James Brown’s “The Payback”, and The Incredible Bongo Band’s “Apache”

“The Mexican” (break played by Mancuso and DJs in the Bronx, happens at 3:35 – 445)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_YhRkAF1tXM
Incredible Bongo Band – “Apache” (1973)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=vnsc_U4sJ8Q
“Apache” is actually a cover originally recorded by The Shadows in 1969:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NoN6AKPGkBo
James Brown, “The Payback” (1973)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IST6qRfVqwY
James Brown’s drummer, Clyde Stubblefield is arguably the most sampled drummer in history:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OOS18vi7WLc

Unity by James Brown & Afrika Bambaataa
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=b6hE5OmpKyc
Afrika Bambaataa and the Soul Soinc Force -“Planet Rock”
(extended mix, 1982)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=7XPmOpLVZPI

Afrika Bambaataa, “Looking for the Perfect Beat”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RJlYzBhLg4

Twilight 22 – “Electric Kingdom”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2RJlYzBhLg4

Al Naafiysh “The Soul” Side A:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zbvDORZ0HlU
Side B:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=i46sF1PcqL8
It’s about time Remix:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8hLUjEO2ZCs

Cybotron “Clear”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=fGqiBFqWCTU
“Clear” Frankie Bones (founder of House music) Remix:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kkrk5Gzo_2A

Herbie Hancock, “Rock it”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GHhD4PD75zY
Live version (inspired many DJs including Mix Master Mike to become DJs–becaue of Grandmaster DSTs performance)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=TN5ltss0NMA
See Mike Scratching:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=0DLED7krHwU

Much of early electro-funk borrowed (sampled freely) or were heavily influenced by the music of Kraftwerk (Germany). Two songs that were heavily sampled are:
Kraftwerk – “Numbers”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4YPiCeLwh5o
Kraftwerk – “Transeurope Express”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qBGNlTPgQII

Newcleus was clearly influenced by the sound coming out of Germany. “Push the Button makes this quite evident.” Also note that while Newcleus were very much experimenting with electro-funk, they also would rap, as you will notice one of their most successful songs is included under the rap section below.

Newcleus – “Push the Button” (extended mix) (1983)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=67zWw4UfHWE
Newcleus – “Push the Button” (with vocal intro)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Vatk9sF7qyI

The P Crew – “Nasty Rock” (1983)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y5rbZ-RQbIg

Midnight Star – “Freakazoid” (1983)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uRo426va26I

 

Music Selection from U.S., Hip Hop (Rap):

Grand Master Flash and the Furious Five – “The Message” (1982)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O4o8TeqKhgY

The Egyptian Lover “Egypt Egypt” (1983)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qjFs9CPGhts

The Egyptian Lover “I Need a Freak” (1983)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o4Cd9wGHtr0

Newcleus – “Jam on It” (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zEmg5GaAHbk

Whodini – “Friends” (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tECCvdWEweA
Whodini – “Five Minutes of Funk”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=pskKw8sPtQk
Whodini – “Five Minutes of Funk” (Instrumental)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_Y5pj1IoJ7Q

Ice T – “Reckless” (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=POydN8X1GSY
Ice T – “Reckless” (extended mix)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CdnPn8QTDIU

Dr. Dre and the Wrecking Crew (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RT9O-pUGsVM

World Famous Supreme Team (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=FHMVkqCKknc
Malcolm Mclaren, “World Famous” (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Dq_dDiLZl38
Malcom Maclaren, “Hobo Scratch” (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B_mHENbpmHk

UTFO – “Roxanne Roxanne”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=4KpngczmD7Q

Roxanne Shante “Roxanne’s Revenge”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=zVy2LHKFG18

Run DMC – King of Rock (1985)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=qXzWlPL_TKw
Run DMC – Sucker MCs (1984)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=rXVFNs0piP8

Beastie Boys – License to Ill (1986)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=U7M7d8u40I4&list=PL07ABD2EB68C1C470

NWA, “Something 2 dance 2” (1988)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=794JyvaTHqQ
NWA, “Straight Out of Compton” (1988)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-MrQtOoQRpc

Public Enemy – “Don’t Believe the Hype” (1988)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=9vQaVIoEjOM
Public Enemy – “Fight the Power” (1990)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8PaoLy7PHwk

Queen Latiffah and Monie Love – “Ladies First” (1989)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hLB5bUNAesc

Monie Love “Monie in the Middle” (1990)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AxHLYjz_oEs

Kid Frost – La Raza (1990)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bZ8AS300WH4
(See disco section for the original song “Viva Tirado” by El Chicano to hear the source of melody and percussion samples)

 

Music Selection from U.S., Hip Hop (Turntablism):

Grandmaster Flash, Adventures on the Wheels of Steel
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=gXNzMVLqIHg
Grandmaster Flash Ibiza 2010
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nwvkRx0eV68
Grandmaster Flash live, 2011
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ue2BVDCF9Vg

DJ Shadow, “Midnight in a Perfect World”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=nmzHRGoKca0

DJ Crush, Kemuri
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=aVjgRlto8PI

Invisible Skratch Picklz Live
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=GQ3N6XADe9I

DJ Qbert, 2012 DMC
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SS0rl7IGHwA
DJ Qbert & Mix Master Mike 2012 DMC
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=h7pVbJClzuc

Kid Koala (Jazz improvization, date unknown)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KbFIGFv4GLQ

Beat Junkies 1998
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=29TIvv5uIVE

Hip-Hop to Dubstep: International Music Styles and the Remix, Part 2 of 7

Above: Skatalites Authentic, included in music selections below.

List of online resources and music selection for week 2 of Hip-Hop to Dubstep, taught during the summer of 2013 at The New School’s  Media Studies, Department of Communication. I will be releasing brief notes based on my class lectures in the near future. If interested in looking at the actual class webpage with all the weekly selections at once, feel free to peruse this link: http://navasse.net/NS/NCOM3039A/. My notes will not be available on the class webpage, only on each corresponding entry here on Remix Theory. Please note that links may become broken. If and when this happens, the best thing to do is to search for the source by name. And do let me know if anything is broken and I will look into it.

View:  Part 1

Week 2
June 10-14, 2013
Dub Music/Hip-Hop

Music selection and relevant links:

Links used to contextualize why everything is not a remix, but why the concept of remixing has become popular to discuss recycling of material in forms beyond music:

Everything is a Remix, Part 1
http://vimeo.com/14912890
Everything is a Remix, Part 2
http://vimeo.com/19447662

 

Historical resources:

History of Jamaican Music Pt 1
(Discusses ska and rock steady)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=C4J4P6ozT0g
BBC Reggae The Story of Jamaican Music Programme 2 Rebel Music
(Discusses reggae and briefly dub)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=WvycRljrAH4
BBC Reggae The Story of Jamaican Music Programme 3 As Raw As Ever
(Internationalization of Jamaican music)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AnBCnX_Hctk

Dub Stories (full documentary): View the first half. The second half of the documentary is about Dub in France :
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=D6Eet-sm8Yw

Deep Soul The Up Rising Of Motown Part 1
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wkd1c4T5HiE
Deep Soul The Up Rising Of Motown Part 2
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Xe9NGrEJQEE
Deep Soul The Up Rising Of Otis Redding Part 3
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=NXGallmBcTA
Deep Soul The Up Rising Of Otis Redding Part 4
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8jFXR6o639g

 

Music Selection from Jamaica, 1960s:

Ska:

Ernest Ranglin, “Liquidation”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=jJ_iZ9iBYBM

Skatalites – Ska Authentic (Album, 1964)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=K4kH8PvwDyM&list=
PL0A7039D867DDDA2A

Skatalites – Simmer down (1964)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=O9HyXc4e7Qc
Youtube’s Music Selection of Skatalites and Ska:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=OwPLeczyhKg&list=RD02O9HyXc4e7Qc

Rock Steady:

John Holt & The Paragons – “I’ve Got To Get Away” (1968)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kRDILYQqUkM
YouTube’s Music Selection of The Paragons:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ECwMLVUt67c&list=
PL22729AAD8001A0B9

The Melodians – “You Don’t Need Me” (1968)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=uHe3owGT7iw

Studio 1 recordings:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=_fCJEmh0G1g&list=RD02uHe3owGT7iw

Reggae (See England)

Dub (mainly 1970s):

Lee Perry and King Jammy – “Rude Boy”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Y87id6TGopc

King Tubby & Augustus Pablo – “Ruler Fi Dub”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=hIhaL04aJpI&noredirect=1
YouTube’s Music Selection of King Tubby:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ZvYSYOKFCbk&list=RD025iQxCG1c39I

YouTube Music Selection of Mad Professor:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BU75iSYyphY&list=RD02ctnz-GciFQ0

 

Music Selection from England, 1960s/70s:

Reggae (recordings took place in England, or were made popular internationally through England, with close ties to Jamaica):

Jimmy Cliff, “The Harder They Come”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xGE4dnrPPZQ
Jimmy Cliff & others, YouTube’s Selection:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=18EAqHx2lMk&list=RD02ixBo3niO_Do

Bob Marley – Catch a Fire (First Album, 1973):
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bDadSKdegBo&list=PL9BDE49614C503F66
YouTube Music Selection of Bob Marley:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=us7hfASz0g4&list=RD026QC_ZMWTxJU

Bob & Marcia – “Young, Gifted and Black”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ubDVUQon5BE
Bob & Marcia – “Really Together”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=mi6LDdBdvzo

 

Music Selection from the United States, 1960s-70s:

The Supremes “Baby Love” (1964)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=23UkIkwy5ZM

Marvin Gaye – “Easy Living” (1964)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=SzyeHRQdTHQ
YouTube Music Selection of Marvin Gaye:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=ARWFDoADlqk&list=RD02SzyeHRQdTHQ

James Brown – “The Payback” (1973)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=IST6qRfVqwY

Motown Music Selection:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=VTe06PrXwo4&list=RD02–jWPzNNdN4

 

(Looking ahead to week 3)
How concepts of Dub and the selector & MC/Deejay were popularly introduced in pop music:

Chic – “Good Times” (1979)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=8g6bUe5MDRo

Sugarhill Gang – “Rapper’s Delight” (1979)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=diiL9bqvalo

Hip-Hop to Dubstep: International Music Styles and the Remix, Part 1 of 7


Above: “Rehab” by the Jolly Boys, Mento cover of Amy WineHouse’s composition (listed below as part of music selection)

This summer I am teaching an onlline class on the history of remix in music since the 1960s for The New School’s  Media Studies, Department of Communication. I will be making available the music selections for each week in a total of 7 entries. I will be releasing brief notes based on my lectures in the near future, for now I am sharing the online resources and music selection.  The first week’s list of resources is below, following the description of the class. If interested in looking at the actual class webpage with all the weekly selections at once, feel free to peruse it: http://navasse.net/NS/NCOM3039A/ . My notes will not be available on the class webpage, only on each corresponding entry here on Remix Theory. Please note that links may become broken. If and when this happens, the best thing to do is to search for the source by name. And do let me know if anything is broken and I will look into it.

Course Description
This course is a theoretical and historical survey of popular music influenced by or part of the remix tradition in hip-hop and electronica. Emphasis is placed on the shaping of culture by media and vice-versa. Remixes are compositions that reconfigure a pre-existing music recording, often to make it more danceable. As simple as the definition sounds, it carries a complex set of cultural variables that include issues of class, gender, and ethnicity. Listening exercises and analysis of recorded music is complemented by readings that provide understanding of the historical context and theoretical underpinning of remix practices. Our survey begins with popular music in the United States in the early 1950s, including Blues, R&B, Rock n’ Roll, and early funk. In the 1960s, this music was appropriated in the Caribbean and gave birth to new styles, Calypso, Ska, Reggae, and Dub. Then it came full circle back to the United States with the development of hip-hop music. The rise of the international styles called trip-hop, drum ‘n’ bass, and dubstep and the parallel history of techno and house music and styles in-between are then considered, in order to arrive at a theoretical understanding of the complexity of contemporary music and the extent to which it has been defined by the principles of sampling and remix.

———–

Week 1
June 3, – 7, 2013
Pre-history/Critical Context
1900 – 1960s

Music selection and relevant links:

Jamaican Music style before the ’60s:

Mento Music:
http://www.mentomusic.com/WhatIsMento.htm
http://worldmusic.about.com/od/genres/p/Mento.htm
Selection of Mento Music:
http://www.mentomusic.com/buy.htm

Brief Video on Mento Music:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=2NWpJZ0t48k

Jamaican Folk Dances Explained:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=RvktJry98nY

Hil and Gully Rider:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=tCpTkfYVHpQ

Contemporary Mento Band, The Jolly Boys:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XDzzlNX-h7Q

Versioning Mento:
Amy Winhouse’s “Rehab” Mento Version by The Jolly Boys:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=XOwl-bMfIkc
Winehouse’s “Rebhab”:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=KUmZp8pR1uc

Jamaican Journey – from mento to dubstep:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=wlkf-F803bI

 

Selection of Music from the United States that influenced Jamaican Culture:

Charles Brown – “Rockin’ Blues”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=flr6S-orNr8
YouTube’s Charles Brown Music Selection:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=CGtu2gMRIPU&list=RD02T77Ubj6EGlE

Louis Jordan, “Let the Good Times Roll”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCWUvI7yKtQ
YouTube’s Louise Jordan Music Selection:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DCWUvI7yKtQ&list=RD021NAUeL0D4SI

Big Joe Turner – “Shake, Rattle & Roll”:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=20Feq_Nt3nM
YouTube’s Big Joe Turner’s Music Selection:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=MJsod7Lgn8E&list=RD02bMcfKSeVKDA

Nat King Cole, “Nature Boy”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Iq0XJCJ1Srw
YouTube’s Nat King Cole’s Music Selection:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=6QRiG_WEzTQ&list=RD02J1glriB54oE

Peggy Lee, “Fever” (1958)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=JGb5IweiYG8

Abbie Mitchell, “Summertime” (1935)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=x0g12TrSnIE

Billie Holiday, “Summertime” (1936)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=Uc-_8LdKTDA

Miles Davis, “Summertime” (1958)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=BQtAWKQ_M7w

 

Versioning “Fever” and “Summertime:”

Susan Cadogan, “Fever”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=T1jvw005Pt0

Ska version of “Summertime” by The Rude Boys (2000)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=xV4W6JqUJpI

Reggae version of “Summertime” by B. B. Seaton (1973)
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=5RAMm_VmOjA

 

Versioning  in Jungle/Drum ‘n’ Bass:

“Sweetest Taboo” by Sade:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=kcPc18SG6uA
“Sweetest Taboo” by Sweet Corner:
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=B6glc6egYdg

Beatles, “Come Together”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=axb2sHpGwHQ
MC Olive, “Come Together”
http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=DVkPYGZnLks

Remix Image Inspired by the Title of my Book, Remix Theory

I received a tweet with the image above.  I think it’s a good remix in its own right. It appropriates not only the title of my book but also the concept behind the sound of music quite well.

Thanks to Harold Schellinx; his tweet: https://twitter.com/hefferman/status/321968978903851008/photo/1

Text Release: Modular Complexity and Remix: The Collapse of Time and Space into Search, by Eduardo Navas

Note: This text was written for the peer review Journal AnthroVision 1.1 | 2012 : First issue. It was published in September of 2012. It is released here with permission from the editors. A special thanks to Nadine Wanono and the peer reviewers for all their support in the process of revising and publishing the text.  This essay is the first formal release of my post-doc research for The Department of Information Science and Media Studies at The University of Bergen, Norway in collaboration with The Software Studies Lab at Calit2, University of California, San Diego during the period of 2010-2012. I will be releasing more of my research in the near future. For now, you may also look over related material, available under Projects.

For proper text citation use:

Référence électronique
Eduardo Navas, « Modular Complexity and Remix: The Collapse of Time and Space into Search  », Anthrovision [En ligne], 1.1 | 2012, mis en ligne le 01 septembre 2012, consulté le 15 mars 2013. URL : http://lodel.revues.org/10/anthrovision/324

Download and read the complete article: DownLoad PDF

Excerpt:

If postmodernity consisted of the collapse of time into space, then the time of globalization at the beginning of the twenty-first century consists of the collapse of time and space into search.  Culture has entered a stage in which time and space are redefined by modular access to knowledge in unprecedented fashion with the use of search engines. Search redefines the way people come to terms with historical developments that are constantly recycled and remixed with the use of new media technology.  A search is usually performed with engines such as Google and Bing; technology that is founded on research that brings together private and public interests.

This text is a reflection on the implications behind search algorithms that provide people with material that is relevant in correlation to a hierarchy of supposed importance that may reach great popularity, and perhaps even go viral (large circulation online) according to the use of key terms known as meta-data. This text is an evaluation of the aesthetics of search made possible because of what I call modular complexity; meaning, the ability to function within a system of modules that are autonomous but that also effectively inform and redefine each other.[1]  This, in effect, leads to the collapse of time and space into search; meaning, if the postmodern gave way to a sense of historical dismissal, such attitude is fully at play in networked culture as ahistoricity.  This shift, which informs emerging markets on the global network, repurposes interdisciplinary methodologies across fields of research in the social sciences as well as the humanities.

[1] I first introduce the concept of Modular Complexity in the Essay “Remix: The Ethics of Modular Complexity in Sustainability,” written for CSPA Journal’s Spring 2010 issue.  See: http://remixtheory.net/?p=461

Download and read the complete article: DownLoad PDF

The Framework of Culture: Remix in Music, Art, and Literature, by Eduardo Navas

Image: The four diagrams of The Framework of Culture. Each is discussed below.

Note: This text was commissioned for the exhibition Reuse Aloud, taking place at the NewBridge Project Space, Newcastle, England; and broadcasting 24 hours a day on basic.fm throughout March, 2013. Many thanks to the curators Will Strong and Rosanna Skett for commissioning the text.  A recorded version is also part of the exhibition.

An earlier version of this text was presented as my keynote speech for Remixed Media Festival in NYC.  In that occassion I only focused on literature. The version for Reuse Aloud was revised to include art and music as well. My thanks to Tom Tenney, director of the NYC festival for giving me the opportunity to test my ideas in front of a very receptive audience.

This text can also be downloaded as a PDF, which is friendlier for print, or for reading on tablets: NavasFrameNC_Web

Introduction

We live in a time when the self-awareness of recycling of material and immaterial things is almost taken for granted. I state almost because, as the following analysis demonstrates, the potential of recycling as a creative act in what we refer to as remix is in constant friction with cultural production. Consequently, the purpose of this essay is to demonstrate the importance of remix as a practice worthy of proper recognition exactly because of its ability to challenge the mainstream’s ambivalent acceptance of aesthetic and critical production that relies on strategies of appropriation, recycling, and recontextualization of material.

Proper recognition is only worthy when it is an attestation of a particular achievement, which can only come about through struggle. Arguably a type of struggle that is certainly recognized and even celebrated quite often, (which admittedly makes for romantic narratives) is the basic human struggle: the will to live. We can think of struggle here as a term spanning across all types of activities, from war to natural disasters—many which are now commonly shared all over the world.

But to begin with a more basic premise, struggle in its most abstract form can simply consist of reflecting on the pain of self-awareness; of having the burden of knowing that we just exist and, for the most part, will do anything to make sure that we will exist for as long as possible. Many of us are willing to find ways to extend our lives before we take our last breath. Others, admittedly, will struggle to leave this world as soon as possible; thus, it may be suicide the subject of struggle in such cases. But this brief reflection on struggle as a humanistic preoccupation is mentioned because we diligently have extended it to everything we produce. It is an important ingredient in what we may call progress.  As romantic as it may sound, human beings have the tendency to struggle in order to be better; whatever that means. And as we have grown as a complex global society, we have been able to extend our struggle on to and through media.

(more…)

Some notes on Simon Reynolds’s Call for Originality, Eduardo Navas

Image source: slate, by Laura Terry.

Back in October of 2012 Simon Reynolds wrote a passionate piece on Remix Culture for Slate magazine titled “Your Are not a Switch” in which he calls out mainly scholars who are using the reference of the DJ and remixing to discuss issues of originality, and especially in his view, questioning the concept of the “genius.”  For me what is striking about Reynolds’s position is that he goes over much of the literature that has been produced for the last few years claiming that all of the authors (amazing that all of them,  a bit essentialist on his part disappointingly), especially those in academia are guilty of dismantling the originality in creativity.  To make a sweeping statement like this is troublesome enough but there is more.

As much as I like Reynolds’s research, including his most recent book titled Retromania, I have to say that his article is long-winded and does not contribute anything new, not even a strong counter-argument against the authors he calls out.  Reynolds appears to want to celebrate the artist as genius, and to do this he claims at the end of his article that there is something to the process of coming up with new material based on a unique interpretation.  Well, this is not so different from what some  of the authors that he is critiquing are saying.  In fact, this is the whole point of the books, such as Synreich’s Mashed up, or Amerika’s Remixthebook.  Perhaps it’s the “academic” or (I prefer) the systematic and rigorous approach of some of the publications that may come off as a way of killing the potential of creativity that is misread by Reynolds.  But to understand the grammar of a process, to understand the history, to understand the politics of a cultural activity does not mean that such an activity, in this case creativity, will whither. It simply means that we will understand it better and we need to because the process of borrowing from and being inspired by others now has turned into a material conflict that is finely tuned with economics.

I’m talking about copyright conflicts, of course. We need to understand the process of creativity because we need to make sure that it keeps flowing as it always has. With new technology we are able to archive more of that process and all that is archived becomes commodity in some way. This is really what is at play at the moment in, yes, all of the books and essays Reynolds is critical of; they are  contributions to overcoming such an impasse. And is creativity or the concept of the genius being redefined in this process? Yes.  But all things change, they evolve.  It’s the way we function.  We cannot hold on to some idea of genius or originality as it functioned in the past.  Just like photography redefined painting, just like the computer redefined just about every aspect of daily life, the concepts of the genius and originality are also being redefined.  And this is not a bad thing at all.

—–

I share a couple of paragraphs from Reynolds’s text below:

Many of these polemics make allusions to DJ culture in their titles: Mark Amerika’sremixthebook, Kirby Ferguson’s video essays and website Everything Is A RemixArram Sinnreich’s Mashed Up.Remixing and mashups are familiar—indeed, somewhat tired—notions in dance culture, but in critical circles they enjoy modish currency because they seem to capture something essential about the cut-and-paste sensibility fostered by digital culture. Likewise, the Internet’s gigantic archive of image, sound, text, and design has encouraged a view of the artist as primarily a curator, someone whose principal modes of operation involve recontextualization and connection-making.

As a neutral description of the current state of the art in many fields, this would be fine. But recreativists don’t just champion these practices, they make grand claims about the essentially recycled nature of all art. In Creative License: The Law and Culture of Digital Sampling, authors Kembrew McLeod and Peter DiCola quote the DJ Matt Black’s assertion that “humans are just sampling machines … that’s how we learn to paint and make music.” In an opinion piece for NPR, Alva Noë discussed contemporary anxieties about plagiarism in a cut-and-paste era and defended quotation as an artistic practice. But instead of stopping there, he also asserted that “sampling is nothing new, not in art, and not in life … Evolution, whether in biology, or in technology and culture, is never anything other than a redeployment of old means in new circumstances.* We use the old to make the new and the new is always old.” Much the same idea crops up in Austin Kleon’s Steal Like an Artist, a sort of self-help manual for modern creatives. Kleon moves quickly from “every new idea is just a mashup or a remix of one or more previous ideas” to insisting that “you are the sum of your influences” and that “you’re a remix of your mom and dad.”

 Read the complete article at Slate

REUSE ALOUD

Image source: Basic.fm

Note: Very happy to be participating in the upcoming exhibition, ” Reuse Aloud.”  Information below.

Directly from the basic.fm blog:

Newcastle’s Tyneside Cinema and The NewBridge Project present Reuse Aloud, a month-long exhibition and radio broadcast throughout March 2013 featuring work from national and international artists, musicians and writers.

The project will be hosted in The NewBridge Project Space on New Bridge Street West and broadcast on Tyneside Cinema’s online radio station basic.fm as part of its digital arts programme, Pixel Palace.

Reuse Aloud is curated by Will Strong and Rosanna Skett and will examine the art of using old and existing compositions to make something new, and ask questions about originality in the digital age.

It will do this through an ambitious schedule of live and pre-recorded work with contributions from artists and musicians from across the globe, including critically acclaimed artists Frank Nora, Eduardo Navas and Natalia Skobeeva, DJs and mashup pioneers Z-trip and Girl Talk, and award-winning Canadian rap artist Baba Brinkman.

Throughout March a radio booth will be installed in the NewBridge Project Space and it will broadcast 24 hours a day on basic.fm.

Reuse Aloud will open to the public at 5pm on Friday 1 March with a preview event featuring new work from artists Andy Ingamells, Sam Christie, Jess Rose, Rachel Magdeburg and Joe Pochciol.

The project space will be open to the public Monday-Friday, 12noon–6pm throughout March and will culminate in a live 24-hour broadcast marathon starting at 6pm, Friday 29 March and running until 6pm, Saturday 30 March.

 

Regular updates about Reuse Aloud can be found at:
http://www.basic.fm/
www.thenewbridgeproject.com <http://www.thenewbridgeproject.com/>
http://www.facebook.com/events/117549618424766/

Panel Discussion for Three Junctures of Remix

Calit2 has made available the panel discussion for the exhibition I curated, Three Junctures of Remix. Artists part of the panel include, in order of appearance, Giselle Beiguelman, Elisa Kreisinger, Mark Amerika, and Arcangel Constanini. The discussion ends with a 10 minute performance by Constanini with his own musical object named Phonotube.

Eduardo

Images from the Exhibition Three Junctures of Remix

Image from Cali2’s Flickr stream. From left to right: Mark Amerika, Giselle Beiguelman, Elisa Kreisinger, Arcangel Constantini, Trish Stone, and Eduardo Navas

The opening at Calit2 on January 17 was a complete success.  Many thanks to Jordan Crandall and the gallery committee for their support in the realization of the exhibition. A special thanks to Trish Stone and Hector Bracho and the entire Calit2 team for all their help.  It was truly a great experience.  The discussion panel, which took place just an hour before the official opening will be online very soon, in the meantime I want to point out that there are lots of great pictures on Flickr for anyone interested to view.

More Soon,

Eduardo

Current Projects