Uncle Junior's Friday Fish Fry (The Market)
compilation includes: dj spinna, manu dibango, gregory isaacs, nuspirit helsinki, vinia mojica, dj jazzy jeff, others.
year of release: 2003
1. Take Off Your Shoes (Intro)
2. Dennis Coffey & Luchi De Jesus : Theme From Black Belt Jones
3. Mongo Santamaria : O Mi Shango
4. NuSpirit Helsinki : Makoomba
5. Afronaught : Transcend Me
6. DJ Spinna feat. Shaun Escoffery : The Music In Me
7. DJ Jazzy Jeff feat. Erro : Rock Wit You (osunlade's Yoruba Soul Mix)
8. Tofico y Sus Rumberos : Noche Cubana
9. Gregory Isaacs : Crofs (Slum Dub)
10. Vinia Mojica feat. Geology : Sands Of Time
11. Peven Everett : Testin Me
12. Brass Construction : Movin
13. Manu Dibango : African Battle
14. Djinji Brown : Blue Hunny (Roots In The Jungle Mix)
15. Grupo Batuque : Isto E Samba (No Comment Mix by Roc Hunter)
16. Agent K. : Hands
17. Marion Brown : Don't Take Your Love From Me (Sax Solo)
18. Quiet Time (Outro)
The Beginners, a supreme German rap group, said in one of their newest songs, that if you make rap, but only listen to rap, that's incest. What's a little paraphrased and obviously translated. But when you look at your favorite producers and favorite DJs, the chance is that they don't just listen to rap.
So when a Djinji Brown is invited to spin at a get together, the sounds would go further than the boom bap. And that's exactly the idea behind this project: get a creative DJ to spin his records, whatever the supposed genre. While the word 'creative' is sneaked into that concept in order to make sure that the selection is indeed varied, special, new. The whole thing is then put into the bigger picture of there actually being something called 'Uncle Junior's Friday Fish Fry', with Wes Jackson explaining the tale in the artwork of this record. Also in there are Djinji's thoughts on 'being a DJ'. And along with the Beginner's quote, with Wes tale, it all leads back to: a good DJ knows more than just one genre.
And so this record bounces back and forth through many musical entity boxes, with you being invited to play the happy 'pick a genre' game. As some are easier to identify, some burst out of all and every limitation, while others happily mingle in some crossbreeding compound.
But it's still obvious that we start out on a Funk moment, with Djinji travelling back some years for "Theme From Black Belt Jones" by Dennis Coffey and Luchi De Jesus. We then take a more or less sharp turn towards Afro Jazz with "O Mi Shango" by Mongo Santamaria, get funkier again on "Makoomba" by NuSpirit Helsinki, before House music enters with Afronaught's "Transcend Me" and "The Music In Me", by also House producer DJ Spinna, here featuring Shaun Escoffery.
The transition into "Rock Wit You (osunlade's Yoruba Soul Mix)" by DJ Jazzy Jeff feat. Erro shows one of the biggest faults of this compilation: it too strongly tries to keep the songs whole, often neglecting the mixing. Like this transition is more than clumsy. Nevertheless the remix is groovy and paths the way for some Latin experience called "Noche Cubana" by Totico y sus Rumberos. Now, I have never been the biggest fan of Latin music, so I need to give this the benefit of the doubt. However, the percussion on this track is so chaotic, so completely random, with the singing also following its own rhythm, I struggle to find much in this track that makes sense.
With Gregory Isaac's "Crofs (Slum Dub)" we turn to a better song, before the plush production of Geology makes Vinia Mojica's "Sands Of Time" just beautiful. This is followed by a just as good a R'n'B/Neo Soul, whatever you wanna call it, tune called "Testin Me" by Peven Everett. Next we're coming full circle again, and already, as Brass Construction's "Movin'" returns to the funky chapter. But the record is not yet finished, so you wonder why Djinji completes the cipher already. Nevertheless, there's more Afro Jazz on Manu Dibango's excellent "African Battle", before Djinji Brown shed's some light on himself, with him putting the eclectic and good "Blue Hunny (Roots In The Jungle Mix)" on this record.
"Isto E Samba (No Comment Mix by Roc Hunter)" by Grupo Batuque is fast and little more, while Agent K's "Hands" lowers the pace with smooth keys. And finally to get the adrenaline down, Marion Brown ends the record with "Don't Take Your Love From Me" a solo sax performance.
Now, we'd like to compare this to DJ Allstar's mix CD we received and love ("Plays @ Mark Hilpert Art Opening"). In many ways that project is similar, considering the varied selection of songs, the overall feel of the project. But his mix was done live at a said opening. This "Uncle Junior's" mix was done in a studio. So while the mishaps on Allstar's project were forgivable, they are not on this record here. The sequencing of the songs, completing a 360 early in the mix, is also questionable. And the argument that 'it's all about the songs' doesn't count, cause then you make a compilation, not a mix. It however actually is kinda mostly about the songs, and here Djinji exposes us to a good selection of tunes, providing the soundtrack for your next get together.
review: tadah
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