ReMix: NBA Jam 'From Downtown'
5,665,470 bytes, 3:31, 212kbps
Streaming preview on YouTube
Did you know that Jon Hey, the composer for NBA Jam, was also the voice of Raiden in Mortal Kombat? Seems like back in the day Midway really let its staff, including composers, have a lot of fun including themselves into games in various ways. At any rate, this track from Jingle All The Way is our first NBA Jam mix, albeit of one of the game's shorter tunes, as per the theme of that album. Kunal writes:
"Figured I'd give this one a go as well. The tune features Mustin on bass and Steve Lella on guitar. HUGE thanks to them! Think they both did a phenomenal job with their tracks and the tune wouldn't be even half as good without 'em."
Nice timing, since the franchise was just revived and given a facelift, and is getting some pretty darn positive critical reception, too. This mix is straight up, old-school funk, precisely the type of treatment that stays true to the roots of the original inspiration. Wiki informs us that:
"The upbeat, funky music written by Jon Hey was inspired by sports music themes and has been compared to George Clinton's P-Funk All Stars. Funkadelic's 1979 (Not Just) Knee Deep shares the most similarity with the music of NBA Jam but was recorded more than a decade before NBA Jam's music was written. The likeness of George Clinton was used as the character "P. Funk" in the console versions of NBA Jam: Tournament Edition. The music of NBA Jam is well known and considered to be one of the most important aspects of the game."
Why thank you, Wikipedia...
Rhythm guitar is central, funky, and frothy, Mustin be slappin', and Kunal's arrangement stretches the scant source out into an extended jam that makes sense & feels natural, with synth & piano licks aplenty. In any funky piece, drums are key, and the breaks and fills here really make it happen, facilitating the minimal source's rebirth into a full-length track. I love the vintage, old school feel Kunal & co. went for here, in particular, and the 3'31" jam serves as another example of the success the Bad Dudes had with a highly conceptual album.
- Crulex on September 20, 2012
The familiarity is there throughout, though even then there's definitely some great expansion taken to the original even with the brief switchs to 7/4 at around 1:10 and again at 2:10, the blissful piano solo taken after it and some very solid live instrument playing here. I also really got to complient the tone to Steve's guitars; it adds that nice 1970s blues feel to it to compliment the rest of the instruments, which when seeing the Wikipedia snippet in the description isn't surprising.
This to me is a good example of how a short track should be done, and I feel very happy that you managed to create something at this kind of expansive level. That and the rest of the Bad Dudes' album really was a push up for them in regards to arrangement for me, so a very well accomplished task indeed! :)
- Rexy on December 2, 2011
I think everyone has a different point where the track clicks for them, but regardless I think it's ultimately an enjoyable listen and a great expansive take on the source.
- Emunator on December 9, 2010
- justinj212 on December 8, 2010
- DragonAvenger on December 6, 2010
mv;723131 wrote: Oh the insane nostalgia.. I loved the original track (especially the Genesis version!) and this arrangement/performance is godlike, in a style rarely tackled on the site. Infinite claps to the artists! Easily becoming one of my fav remixes on the website; my only nitpick is that I'd love to hear a longer clavinet (I think?) solo/long & fast run à la Herbie Hancock but otherwise this is perfection :)
I, too, would have liked to hear some longer/more pronounced solos, especially some that don't have the source playing in the background. While the guys get astoundingly much out of the rather short source tune, I do feel that the remix becomes somewhat repetitive in the second half, simply because the original riff is almost always there.
Nevertheless, nice work.
- Martin Penwald on October 30, 2010
- halc on October 28, 2010
- mv on October 18, 2010
- OA on October 18, 2010
- BlackPanther on October 16, 2010
- Mazedude on October 15, 2010
- zyko on October 15, 2010
- djpretzel on October 15, 2010