Mashups- Love em or Hate em?

People on my buddy list must hate me. Because rather than hit them up about serious shit, I’m always sending them random youtube links to mashups and whatnot.

Mashups aren’t a new thing, DJs have been making them since god knows when, and hip-hop is pretty much founded on this idea of mashing up samples to make something new. But what I like about current mashups is that since Danger Mouse’s Grey Album (which, for the record, I’m not a big fan on), producers have been going in heavy on the thematic side, making projects inspired by the idea of mashing up one artist with a consistent theme. It’s not random.

So Viva La Hova (download it HERE) dropped monday night, it’s the Jay-Z/Coldplay mash-up project that Mick Boogie and Terry Urban are behind that I posted about last week. I produced cut #10 “Science is Ignorant,” and I gotta say, it was a lot of fun working with the Coldplay source material, coming up with a creative way to keep the vibe of the music but add to it at the same time and come up with an original production.

If I’ve heard any criticism at all about this project– regardless of the fact that everyone seems to love it– it’s that maybe some of these Coldplay songs sound better without Jay-Z. Perhaps that’s mostly coming from the Coldplay fan side. It’s almost this idea that when hip-hop dudes get involved in mash-ups, they always build the mashed up tracks around the rapper, instead of sorta just remixing the artist’s songs and sprinkling the rapper’s verses here and there (a la Girl Talk). Or shit, maybe you put Chris Martin’s vocals to a Jay-Z instrumental?

That said, what’s the general consensus on mash-ups from the xxl readers…. love em or hate em? Are you satisfied with the level of creativity that producers are showing with their mashups? Do you wish the trend would die? Are hip-hop dudes wack at making mash-ups? Are rock guys better? What are some of your favorite mash-ups and why?

Here’s a few of my favorites, just off top of my head:
Cookin Soul’s Jay-Z/Oasis- Ojayzis
“Country Grammar”/”Sweet Home Alabama”
“In Da Club”/”Stayin Alive”
“December 4th”/”Oh What A Night”
“Miss New Booty”/”Men Without Hats”

  • Rob The Music Ed

    Generally I don’t care for mash-ups. My science is simple, is the music good? Sometimes the idea behind a mash-up is better than the actual music is.

    At the very end of the day the only thing that matters is if we have a good piece of music. I wasn’t a fan of the Danger’s Grey Album either- I felt the idea was better than the music and to me (for the most part) there wasn’t much wrong with the Black Album, so I didn’t need a remix or mash-up.

    That being said I am no fan of Cold Play. I couldn’t name you more than 3 Cold Play songs… but so far this Viva La Hova shit is fresh.

    I’ve been playing #10 on repeat, but then again maybe I’m bias. lol

  • KFrizzle

    I think the mashups are a good look as it shows the versatility of hip hop. I really wasn’t feelin the Black Album until I heard the Gray Album. Hearing the Gray Album totally changed the attitude of how the Black Album was made and to me it came off as much more introspective just by changing the melody. PSA sounds like he’s trying to make a totally different point on the Gray Album — to me at least.

    That being said, I think that the Black Album is the most versatile hip hop record ever made with the successful Linkin Park mashup and the numerous others I’ve heard that were dope.

  • Pierzy

    I don’t generally love mashups, but I really liked The Grey Album and I’ve been looking forward to Viva La Hova. I think it (obviously) all depends on BOTH sides of the mashup.

  • TheCo!!inB

    I like them when there’s a theme to what’s happening and not just a producer putting their beats over whomevers last album. I didn’t like Danger Mouse’s joint either but I thought the idea was brilliant. I haven’t spent much time with this one but from what i’ve heard i’ve liked.
    Gooch did you ever catch the producer for Cunnyliguist version of the Black Album….by far the craziest/dopest remix album ever done.

    • http://www.turntablethoughts.com/ Silence

      KNO’s White Album. It really is the real version of the Black Album and the only one I listen to. Not really a mashup but way better. There really is nothing like a whole cd produced by a single producer.

  • fredMS

    haha this entire article is a reason to post up your track. not hating though, just don’t front.

  • Gooch

    my track isn’t posted, guy. So relax

  • http://www.xxlmag.com jackpot

    It’s hit and miss in my opinion. Linkin Park and Jay-Z had some ill mashups. Some of mashups are so good, they surpass the original.

  • Ali

    yeah like jackpot said…the encore mash-up was pretty sick, but thats the only 1 I ever liked so yeah….I heard a recent one with the let it rock song ft. wayne mixed in with jay’s roc boys verse…..that was ok too

  • x

    nah, the real problem with these mash-ups is that the hip-hop community automatically thinks you’re artistic, expanding your horizons, working on another level etc if you work with (or do a mash-up with) anyone outside the rap/r&b world. the plain truth is that colplay is fucking terrible. good charlotte is a joke. linkin park sucks dick.

    step your white-people music game up, hip-hop world.

  • Dub Sac

    I’m not usually a fan. They come across (most of the time) as gimmicky. And the whole rap/rock crossover thing doesn’t usually work that well in practice. Rock doesn’t tend to swing – and I love the old NY sample-based beats that had a hard-ass swing to the drums.

  • spotrusherz

    i just know one thing – i hate when the producer of a mash-up ignores the harmonies. mostly when a sung chorus is totally out of key with the beat.