Mastermix DJ Dave Evans takes us back to the Old School – for some of us anyway!
As a DJ you sometimes get asked for “Old School RnB” or “Throwback Anthems”. But what is Old School nowadays? For people of my age (47, don’t remind me) it could be dipping back in to the 80’s for the likes of Jocelyn Brown or Luther Vandross or even some classic 90’s such as Mark Morrison or TLC.
But to your younger crowd, a ‘throwback’ could be something from 10 years ago. Considering that we are one year away from the new Roaring Twenties this blog is going to look back at 10 urban tracks from the 00s that still provoke a big reaction today, even when some are nearly 20 years old.
Instant hook with the strings, uplifting intro and smooth vocals. This record is one that you will hear a least once a night if you are out regardless if it was an Urban night or just a commercial venue. Great R’n’B record which spent nearly half a year in the charts. It seems strange though that he only had one other minor hit in 2004 and hasn’t been in the charts since. But at least he charted, unlike…
- Serani – No Games
Released in 2009, this record has never been in the UK top 75, yet it is one of the most well-known urban records of the decade and one that is certain to fill any floor. A true “sleeper” track with a distinctive intro and smooth dancehall appeal, No Games is a great record.
Alongside Turn Me On, this record is 16 years old in 2019, unlike Kevin Lyttle, Beyoncé announced her departure from Destiny’s Child with a horn filled stomper of an anthem designed to make you strut onto the dancefloor and show the world just how fabulous you are. The only down point to this
track, for me, is the Jay-Z rap section which slows the track down a little but, taking that aside, Crazy In Love is a track which will always get reaction (unlike Single Ladies which is sounding dated now)
The song is too long, it has no real outro point to cut it down if you want to mix out of it early and it isn’t even Usher’s best song (U Remind Me). But, Yeah! Is his biggest hit and one that has stood the test of time with regards to filling a floor. A shorter version or one with a break in the middle would
make it better for DJ’s to work with but, as long as it makes people dance, I’ll keep playing it.
After 2 minor hits in the UK and as the first track released from their 3rd album. Where Is The Love exploded onto the scene and went straight to No.1 across the world with its message of peace and love that still resonates today. An end of night anthem certain to make people throw their hands up at the chorus and one for the ages.
Moving from the harder edge of Gimme The Light to a more commercial style of dancehall Sean-A-Paul found the formula to success and this track, along with Get Busy or Like Glue, will still work 13 years after it was first released and is one of the most requested records I get asked when working.
No list of 00’s Urban anthems would be complete without Mary J Blige and this string inspired anthem still holds up as a pure hip hop/soul fusion that tells you what to do. When she says “get you’re a** on the dancefloor” then you have to obey the queen.
This could have been “In Da Club” and if I was working a commercial venue then I would be more likely to play that than Candy Shop, but if you were doing a night more dedicated to urban music then Candy Shop would be the de-facto choice for a 50 Cent track. Heavy driving bass and powerful suggestive lyrics makes this a track for couples to “enjoy”.
“OH!” and with that vocal we are off on a 3:47 masterpiece of r’n’b dance music. A catchy chorus designed to evoke loud voices, and also the occasional shirt off combined with a funky back beat makes Hot In Herre a record that will ignite a dancefloor when dropped. Even though Dilemma was a bigger hit, this record still has the bigger crowd appeal
By the time Without Me was released, Eminem was already established as one of the most successful rappers in the world. Without Me managed to combine the lyrical fun of Real Slim Shady with a more commercial beat giving him his 3rd UK No.1, and a song that still works in both a commercial venue and a more specialised night with its bouncy chorus and strong lyrics.
In compiling this there are so many artists such as Rihanna, Notorious B.I.G, Missy Elliot, Akon and others that could quite easily have made the list. But this blog should give you a guide to tracks that for me, still fill a floor in 2019.
Where possible I’ve linked to the DJ Beats version of each track mentioned. With added 8 bar intro and outro beats, it makes live mixing seamless!
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