I'll keep this intro rather short and sweet, as this one's pretty self-explanatory and cut and dry... while watching the Atlanta Falcons honorable attempt at a Super Bowl LI Champion trophy last night, I saw this rather intriguing @2DopeBoyz-premiered DJ Manipulator (@dustymanip) mix prop up within my Twitter timeline. Its Herbie Hancock & The Headhunters Head Hunters re-appropriating cover artwork is the first thing that caught my eye (I've been obsessed with "Watermelon Man" ever since RS500). After a brief, yet highly informative listen, I decided to write a quick email to the self-proclaimed "DJ/Producer/NERD Contact'"s Twitter-listed email contact, which ended up being his manager, Derek "Kas" Kastal. Long story short... Kas quickly got me in touch with DJ Manipulator himself and we decided the best form of "attack" might be some sort of playlist of "Jazz Is Everything" mix breakdown; by around 1:00 am, DJ Manipulator had emailed me a breakdown of the striking Jesse Racusen-designed cover image and "a breakdown [of his] 6 favorite joints off the mix," which you can now, thoroughly enjoy down below while listening to his comprehensive 30-minute "Jazz is Everything" mix. DJ Manipulator's Hip-Hop & Jazz-melding mix is currently available for streaming and FREE download from his Soundcloud page, along with a complete 20-track playlist. DJ Manipulator's "2 Drums"-featuring Stranger Than Paradise album should be expected sometime this year.
"This mix really began with the artwork. I had the idea for the cover about a year ago; I was [listening] to Herbie Hancock & The Headhunters' Head Hunters (1973) and was always intrigued but the famous yellow Goli mask on his head and though, "what if you were to see the same mask, but in a different setting?" Around the same time, I was looking through my crates and saw the cover for Brand Nubian's Everything Is Everything (1994) and the two just connected in my head. Just imagining three guys in a car wearing the Goli mask and one of them is getting ready to roll a blunt. That sh*t was funny to me, but also made sense. Flipping a Hip-Hop album for a Jazz project was just another version of flipping a sample to me. I contacted my good friend Jesse Racusen [who] I've worked with before on previous album covers and he made my idea come to life."
6 Favorite Tracks Off "Jazz Is Everything" (mix) & My Connection with Them:
1. Amahad Jamal's "Swahililand"
Amahad is genius and this track was the perfect way to set off this mix. Aside from being the sample for De La Soul's Stakes Is High (1996), the piano on this is pure beauty.
2. Eddie Henderson's "Inside You"
I remember finding this record during a digging session; so smooth! This track was was sampled for Jay Z's "Coming of Age" from the Reasonable Doubt album (1996). It's still one of my favorite Jay Z songs to this day, so I had to throw the sample in the mix.
3. Ramsey Lewis' "Tambura"
The break on this join is bananas! I used this part of the mix just as an excuse to cut sh*t up. Had fun doing it, too!
4. Laboratorium's "Szalony Baca"
I got this joint at a record show in Providence, [Rhode Island]. Before the show, I never saw this record before. When I got home, I was blown away. This song puts me in a dream-like state. It's so dope!
5. David Matthews' "Sandworms"
Way back when I first started digging for records, David Matthews’ Dune was one my Holy Grails. The legendary Large Professor used this sample [on] his classic, "The Mad Scientist." One of the illest bass lines of all time.
6. Herbie Hancock's "Stars In Your Eyes"
I had to put a Herbie joint on here. It's kinda funny though. It might be the least Jazzy joint on the mix, but f*ck it. It's funky as Hell and one of my favorite songs of all time.