Mixtape Monday: The Very Best Mixtapes Of Summer 2014
The calendar keeps turning, the mixtape machine keeps spinning and before you can reach for that next iced refreshment, summer has passed you by. Time is the inescapable, the irresistible, the unnegotiable and the unchallenged, but that doesn't mean we can't fill these hours with some of the very best mixtapes that the warm sunny season has produced.
Turn the pages and you'll catch the monster Summertime Mixtape Volume 5 from DJ Jazzy Jeff and Mick, DJ Treats's commemorative Common set, a dose of London sound courtesy of Jamie XX, Spoek Mathambo South African stylistics and even a playlist straight from the brain-trust of OKP itself. Through the rest of the week we'll be adding more of our favorites, making this your one-stop-shop for the best damn mixtape material on earth. Get wise and make this your new homepage, because we going in with everything we got.
Jazzy Jeff and Mick hit us hard back in June with a set of old-school-heavy cuts on their Summertime Volume 5 mixtape. From the opening beckon of Alicia Keys to some classic De La Soul and the 1-2 punch of Raphael Saaddiq and Snoop Dogg, this mix is not to be denied and is still making getting play in Manhattan's most groove-inclined lounges. Just as before, peep the download link in the embedded player itself, or click here and follow the instructions.
Summertime 5 Intro (Produced by 6th Sense)--Biz Markie
Let Me Prove My Love--The Main Ingredient
You Don't Know My Name--Alicia Keys
Sock it to Me (Remix)--Missy Elliot
So Ambitious--Jay Z
Don't Disturb This Groove--The System
Watermelon Man--Herbie Hancock
Dolly My Baby--Supercat
Props Over Here--Beatnuts
Tha Bizness--De La Soul feat. Common
Remindin' Me of Sef--Common
Feel My Flow--Naughty By Nature
Give it to You--Da Brat
Let The Funk Flow--EPMD
Send My Love--Born Jamericans
Right Here/Human Nature--SWV/Michael Jackson
Somethin for the Honeys--Montell Jordan
I Went for Mine--Diamond D
Get Involved--Raphael Saadiq feat. Q-Tip
Spring Again--Biz Markie
Groove Thang (Jeff's That DJ Edit)--Zhane
Sir Duke--Stevie Wonder
The Humpty Dance--Digital Underground
You & Music--Donald Byrd
Do Me--Bill Bev Devoe
My Perogative--Bobby Brown
Poison--Bell Biv Devoe
Knee Deep (Jorun Remix)--Funkadelic
Me Myself & I--De La Soul
The Breaks--Kurtis Blow
Remember Me (Jim Sharp Remix)--Blue Boy
Stay Cool--The Roots
Got Til it's Gone--Janet Jackson
Big Yellow Taxi--Joni Mitchell
Bag Lady--Erykah Badu
Get Lifted (Remix)--Keith Murray
I'll Take Her--Ill Al Scratch
Hey Look Away--Questionmark Asylum
Sealed With A Kiss (Chi Duly + Mick Outro)--Bobby Vinton
DJ Treatsgifted Okayplayer with an exclusive mix with his Com Rules Everything Around Me. The through-composed Common set marked the arrival of Com's latest LP Nobody's Smiling.
Treats told us just exactly what he wanted to achieve with the mixtape, which we can all agree is a complete success:
Common might be the only rapper I know to only do hip-hop at one speed—100. Compared to his public persona, Common's laid back demeanor is a 180 degree turn from his high energy performances in the booth, or on stage. That approach is akin to how I DJ. The majority of my mixes, whether using turntables, or mixing on-the-go with my iPhone, is always in one take. The result is a seamless one-track dive into whatever I feel at the moment. In this case, I combed through Common's catalog of bangers dating back to when he intro'd with Can I Borrow A Dollar? I wanted to give you that feeling of Common blazing through all his hits as if you were at his concert, or if I was spinning at his album release party. Speaking of which, this reminds me of that time when I deejayed Common's celebration party for Be, that XXL magazine sponsored, because they gave him the coveted 5 mic rating. I had the chance to play a lot of the hits leading up to this next pivotal moment in Common's already legendary career. As the night played on, I would be joined by Common, Kanye West, and John Legend in the DJ booth. They talked to the crowd; Common performed a verse from "The Corner," and Kanye freestyled over Amerie's "One Thing" instrumental (despite his frustration with me for playing the TV track... #kanyeshrug). It was a magical night for rap that I channeled throughout this hour-long tribute to Chi-Town's finest.
The ever-reigning king of England's electro-ambient empire, Jamie XX hit the decks to provide an "homage to London" set on Young Turks' rooftop for Boiler Room with a set that flutters from old-school Brit club grooves to his own new material and back through all points in between. With releases from FKA Twigs, Taylor McFerrin, and Jamie himself, the summer's been a treat for fans of synthesized sounds that still breathe living air. Hit play, take a drive, or just drift off out toward the galaxy of your choice.
We at OkP HQ did our vest best to set some fireworks off this 4th of July with our essential holiday picnic jams playlist. And as luck may have it, we've got another 3kend on our hands, which means it's time to roll out the grill and press play on our own little mixtape-that-could. We just couldn't say no to Stevie Wonder, Michael Jackson, A Tribe Called Quest, Marvin Gaye, The Moments, Erykah Badu and yes, we really mean it, Montell Jordan. Hit the 8tracks mixdown just below and kick back. This summer isn't over until we decide it is.
A Tribe Called Quest - "We Can Get Down"
Skee-Lo - "I Wish"
Marvin Gaye - "Got to Give it Up (Pt. 1)"
The Meters - "Look-ka Py Py"
Marlena Shaw - "California Soul"
Raphael Saadiq ft. Q-Tip - "Get Involved"
Arrested Development - "People Everyday"
Montell Jordan - "Somethin' 4 da Honeyz"
Outkast - "Southernplayalisticadillacmuzik"
Erykah Badu - "Bag Lady"
Stevie Wonder - "I Wish"
The Moments - "Girls"
Jackson 5 - "Dancing Machine"
Rufus - "Tell Me Something Good"
Roy Ayers - "Everybody Loves the Sunshine"
J Dilla - Love ft. "Pharoahe Monch"
The Roots - "Good Music"
Prince - "Just As Long As We're Together"
Curtis Mayfield - "Superfly"
The Very Best - "Kamphopo"
Grace Jones - "My Jamaican Guy"
Blood Orange - "You're Not Good Enough"
Michael Jackson - "P.Y.T. (Pretty Young Thing)"
DJ Jazzy Jeff & The Fresh Prince - "Summertime"
Our good fam over at Okayafrica kept summer scintillating with mixtapes on a near-daily basis, but doubtless our favorite came from South African music man Spoek Mathambo. His South African Rap Mix dishes up the very choicest of rhyme-smithing to come out the country in recent years. The likes of Riky Rick, Okmalumkoolkat, Cassper Nyovest, The TeMple, BIG FKN GUN, PHFat and more all get shine in this near-hour homage, which we guarantee will keep you sweating even as the leaves start changing colors.
K.O – Caracara (Feat. Kid X)
PHFAT – Lights Out Ft. JungFreud
Riky Rick – Amantombazane (Remix) Ft. DJ Dimplez,Maggz,Ginger Breadman,Kid X,Kwesta,Nadia Nakai & Okmalumkoolkat
Khuli Chana – Tswa Daar (Explicit Radio Version) [feat. Notshi]
Sheen Skaiz – Muthafucka Up (freestyle)
Ifani – Shake
Sheen Skaiz – Gusheshe
Cassper Nyovest – Gusheshe ft Okmalumkoolkat
The TeMple – STATES
JR – Bob Mabena_Feat. OKMalumKoolKat & Spoek Mathambo
The TeMple – NTSANGO
Big Fkn Gun – Space
Big Fkn Gun – RIOT
White Nite & Ms Amnesia – Swaggatron 2000
Die Antwoord – Zef Town Juke
Okmalumkoolkat – Inhliziyo Yami Izibozi
Kanyi – Ungalibali(prod.Khosh) Iintombi-Zifikile
Khuli Chana – Mnatebawen ft KayGizm and Fifi Cooper
DJ Switch Ft Reason – SWITCH
REASON – Bump The Cheese Up Remix Feat. Toll Ass Mo; AKA; OkMalumKoolKat
Ruffest – Ufunani (Maramza Ghetto-Bass Remix)
Cassper Nyovest – Doc Shebeleza
Sibot – Nice Shandee’s ft Okmalumkoolkat
Samthing Soweto – Dreamin Of U
DJ Mitsu The Beats made summer a mighty bit brighter with his J Dilla tribute LP Celebration of Jay, and we'd be remiss not to reassert its dopeness here and now. Many a commemorative track, mix, or full-on album have been devoted to the late great James Yancey, but we're adamant about Mitsu's work herein. The strings float, the bass bubbles and the boom-baps live and breathe; there's no better way to close out summer than this salute to Detroit's finest.
Roots Picnic Mixtape 2014 by Matthew Law
You already know that summer 2014 kicked off with our annual Memorial Day weekend blow-out that was the 7th Annual Roots Picnic in beautiful Illadelphia. You already know just how wild it got with Ms. Janelle Monae, Snoop Dogg, Action Bronson and our very own Legendary Roots Crew. And if you, like us, are itching to relive some of that divine day then we recommend pressing play on Matthew Law's very special Roots Picnic preview mixtape--a representative set of tracks from this year's performers that sounds just as lovely now as it did when summer started. Is it May 2k15 yet?
(Artwork by KerryEJordan)
It seems true that Prince is headed back our way with two full albums of new material this fall, but really, did The Purple One ever leave us? Ally Al made a strong case for the sometimes-symbolized funk man's eternal greatness with his very special Shut Up Already & Jam! all-Prince mix, compiled exclusively for Okayplayer. There's no tracklisting on purpose for this one--all you really need to know is that Prince presides.
One of our designated Artists to Watch in 2014, Sampha has been tantalizing us this year thus far with glimmers of new music, be it a collaboration with SBTRKT or his own blissful low-fi Sundanza EP. Still, there's no such thing as too much when it comes to the British future-soul crooner, and thankfully this summer saw him step above the decks at Boiler Room and dish out a fantastic live set of music that fits perfectly with his dreamy r&b stylings. Yes, this mix roundup is meant to give your last summer cookout and drop-top drive a bit of upbeat bounce, but summer nights with Sampha are another memory we'd like to to linger in a little longer.
We're still recovering from the joyful noise of Michael Jackson's birthday celebrations last week, but it's never too soon to press repeat on the King of Pop. DJ JayCee (AKA The Cutty Professor) threw a massive Atlanta bash to mark the occasion (which we demand be made a national holiday--write your local congressperson) and let us debut an exclusive all-MJ mix to go with it. You can read the full extrapolation of the mix here, and if you just can't wait the play button is waiting just below. Summer flew by so fast, and all we can do is blame it on the boogie.
Long Live The King Tracklist
1. Intro: Madonna Speaks
2. SHOW You The Way To Go
3. Blame It On The Boogie
4. Shake Your Body Down To The Ground
5. The Love You Save
6. Dancing Machine (Big Trudy's Domecracker Dub)
7. Rock With You (Jean Claude Stripped Down Mix)
9. Love Never Felt So Good (Jaycee's ColliPark Mix)
10. Billie Jean
12. Off The Wall
13. Wanna Be Startin' Somethin
14. Can You Feel It
15. State Of Shock
17. Dirty Diana
18. Day & Night Filtered Scratch Break
19. Workin' Day & Night
20. You Can't Win
21. Never Can Say Goodbye (Jaycee's Stripped "Clean" Mix)
22. Got To Be There
23. They Don't Really Care About Us In Ferguson
24. Man In The Mirror
25. I Can't Help It feat. Beyonce
26. Remember The Time (the EARGASMIC re-fixx)
27. Outro: Madonna Speaks
Turntable master and mix-maker extraordinaire DJ Raydar Ellis made August harder than you think with his Chuck D tribute set. Loaded with pretty much every last verse that the Public Enemy MC ever spit, the straight-composed mix is not just a testament to Chuck's flow, but a sign of Raydar's muscle as a compilation-crafter who knows when to embellish, when to layer and when to just get out the damn way. It's already gotten us in the mood for some brand new Chuck D rhymes...
We'll end the Best of Summer 2014 back at the beginning of the whole soulful season. The mixtape maestro Applejac never stops working to bring us ideal warm-weather mixes of hip-hop, funk, and futurist soul. His Summer Madness 3 mix is no doubt the best edition in the series thus far and charts a course all over the world, from the Caribbean to Brazil to Brooklyn and back again. Here it is, a groove slightly transformed. Just a bit of a break from the norm...
[Read the full interpretation of Applejac's acumen over at SoulBounce]
Willie Colón y Hector Lavoe - Todo Tiene Su Final
Alex Wilson feat. Aquilla Fearon - Ain't Nobody (Salsa Remix Version)
Monguito Santamaria - Ne Ne
Mauricio Maestro feat. Nana Vasconcelos - Ouvindo Estrelas
Fela Ransome Kuti & Africa '70 - Lady
Sonora Ponceña - Tumba La Cana Jibarito
Cheo Feliciano - Esto Es El Guaguanco
Sly & The Family Stone - Family Affair (Ahmed's SambaSalsaSoul Remix)
Fela Ransome Kuti & Africa '70 - Who're You
Tommy Olivencia - Vengo Del Monte
Snowboy - Los Rumberos De La Habana Y Matanzas
Louie Vega feat. Raul Midon - Let The Children Play
Ray Barretto - Right On (Whiskey Barons Edit)
Sergio Mendes - Magalenha (Whiskey Barons Edit)
Mark de Clive-Lowe - Relax…Unwind in San Juan (Afrojas Ricanstruction)
Sunlightsquare - Ochosi (Original Mix)
Luis Vagner Lopes - Chula Louca
Stevie Wonder - Another Star
Hector Lavoe - Mi Gente (Louie Vega EOL Dub)
Boddhi Satva feat. Amos Kangala - Siriri (Dub Version)
DJ Djeff - Os Dois Velhos (Oba Oba) (Trinidadian Deep Remix)
Black Coffee - We Dance All Night (Original)
Soul Ascendants - Tribute
Fela Ransome Kuti & Africa '70 - Expensive Shit
Manu Dibango- Africa Boogie