ReMix: ToeJam & Earl "Killer Toe Funk"
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WTF? A dirty & grimy funk jam collab from... FFmusic Dj & Geoffrey Taucer?!? Yep! While Haroon & Jeremy most recently collaborated on a Paul Simon-inspired arrangement of SMB that was surprising in its own right, this lovely chunk of gritty rock/funk is even more of a stylistic departure for BOTH of them - one that funkdafies, rocks out, and presents both artists in a new light; FFmusic Dj writes:
"I haven't composed a remix in quite some time. I haven't submitted to OCR in ages. I want to fix those two things.
The song originated as a test song for a phaser plugin I developed for guitars and synths. The song just kept growing from 4 bars, to 8, until we had about 20 bars of content and wanted to continue making it into a full song. Me and Jeremy just kept going for a month or more until it was finished. Production was fun and the content we recorded will hopefully be available soon for Reason users. I think Jeremy did a great job with the guitar, and I honestly can't wait to do more work with him in the future. I really miss making music, and I'm glad to be back."
Us, too! Very cool that Haroon is doing software dev on rack extensions/plugins for Reason, especially considering ex-judge and well-known cool guy Mattias Häggström Gerdt is a prophead himself. Small world! Jeremy adds:
"OH MY COSMOS, IT FEELS SO GOOD TO BE MAKING MUSIC AGAIN! This started out as a short demo for Haroon's distortion and phaser plugins (which everybody should buy right now: http://thatmusiccompany.com) and evolved from there.
I did the guitars, Haroon did everything else on the production side (percussion, badass organ work, and making me sound like a much better guitarist than I actually am), and the overall arrangement was very much a collaborative effort. I pulled a few ideas from live jams I've done of the same source at MAGFest, so while they didn't contribute directly to the mix as recorded here, I want to give shout-outs to Jay "audio fidelity" Yaskin, Brad "prophetik" Burr, Sam "Shnabubula" Weiss, Noah "Escariot" Luddington, and Sid "Sid Meier" Meier. At any rate, this mix was a blast to work on, and I will hopefully be doing many more collabs with Haroon in the future."
Someday we'll have to get the story on how Sid earned such a wild & crazy pseudonym. First off, I love both these guys - great musicians, creative arrangers, and generally just smart/nice people you want to talk to & hang out with. If Taucer can sit through an hour of me explaining why he shouldn't be a pantheist, he can sit through anything :) Their previous musical collaboration on SMB leaned more towards Taucer's style in terms of my own personal expectations & familiarity, but in this case it's a brave new world for both of them - crazy that this mix began life as a demo for one of Haroon's plugins, as it represents such a shift (and a successful one, at that) for both of them. Toejam and Earl: Back in the Groove recently completed a successful kickstarter campaign to bring the duo back to life for audiences new & old, so the timing's good, too. While primarily a (relatively intuitive) funk arrangement of a funk original, there's a lot of rock influence thrown in, and the organ writing ends up shaping the arrangement in a significant way. Lovely wah guitar, too - reminded me of Cream's "White Room," which is only ever a compliment. Emunator writes:
"This is pretty much the last thing I'd expect to hear from the two collaborating artists, given their previous musical styles, so hearing this was such a fantastic surprise. Like your other collaborations that I've heard, the end result is a totally natural fusion, and this piece in particular does a great job showcasing the distortion effects you were trying to demo without ever feeling like a sales pitch that lacks any heart or fun behind it. Good work guys :-)"
"I love to hear remixes that aren't quite as "produced", something that sounds live and spontaneous. This really hit the spot. Great organ noodling, tasteful ear candy FX - a welcome take on a game that lends itself well to remixes."
What they said - great to see more TJ & E on OCR, and great to see HP & JW work together again and create a funk/rock jam that's easy to get into it and hard not to like. Cool series of games that wears its love of funk music on its sleeve - psyched to see it getting another entry, and definitely loving this surprising homage from two veteran ReMixers! Now the only question is... which one is Toejam, and which one is Earl? Fellas?