From Thes One of People Under the Stairs:

Wow. It’s always a humbling experience to hear how much true talent there is out there making music that flies under the radar. I would like to personally thank everyone who participated in this contest, I know you all put hard work into your remixes and I wish there didn’t have to be one singled out as the “winner”. They are all dope to me in one way or another, so I had to come up with some criteria for justifying the pick. This brings up a more philosophical question –What is a good remix? Is it just a dope beat with the same lyrics over it, or is it a completely different take on the original, whether in style, mood, tempo or sometimes in this case a whole different genre. I think everyone’s answer to that would probably be different, so here’s mine: at best I feel a remix not only re-presents the song but has some contextual tie to the original and delivers a new musical take without sacrificing the original feel. For instance, I appreciate the number of dance and house remixes that were done but a few of them seemed to lay the vocals on as an afterthought. If the rhymes aren’t riding the beat, I feel like the song is better off as a beat and not a “remix”. On the same note, the breakdown was definitely the curveball in the remix. And sometimes everything was going well up until that point but he beat never recovered coming out of it. I know it was a difficult thing to hook up but hey, if we had done that and it was a fixed tempo all the way through, any person with any beat could have laid the vocals over it and been done. At least this showed who put the extra effort into the project.

This all being said, there were alot of remixes I really liked personally, but I had to narrow it down to my top ten picks, not of taste or personal preference, but how well they served the rhymes and the original track (and yes I listened carefully to every single entry, which is why it took 20 days to get results):

My (I apologize in advance if it’s not your top 13) top 13 in no particular order:

Abnormal Injustice (Page 6) – This one gets props for using NES sounds, and shows me that they know whats up with PUTS and our penchance for video games. Nice changes throughout the verses and the vocals are riding the beat correctly. A nice transition into the slowdown and an interesting way to come out of the tempo change.
People Under the Stairs – ‘Hit the Top’ (Abnorml Injustice Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

Ilpikaso Remix (page 9) – I like this because it reminds me of a dark era of Los Angeles music, back alley smokey stuff. They get props for being the only one I can remember who hooked up a newly recorded chorus. Double’s verse came back in correctly on the one (a lot of people missed that one). Wall of sound stuff, really cool.
People Under the Stairs – ‘Hit The Top’ (ILPIKASO Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

Fdel Remix (page 8) – Yeah! Filter, drumbreak, loops, Grazing in the Grass. Very nice. Takes me back to a happy place. A good example of keeping it styling and simple. Beat was open enough to let the lyrics breathe and they rode the beat just right. Could have been on ? or Next Step easily, good shit.
People Under the Stairs – ‘Hit the Top’ (fdel Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

Hands Of Stone Remix (page 8) – Interesting and nice programming. Handled the transition really nicely. Reminds me of a classic b-side style remix. Something dudes would buy so they could rock the instrumental at ciphers back in the day. Man I miss hip hop. Nice job on the fade out too!
People Under the Stairs – Hit The Top (Hands Of Stone RMX) by peopleunderthestairs

King Kooba Octoberhest Mix (page 7) – I love how the keyboard sample sounds wobbly, like the record was still speeding up to speed at the downbeat. Reminds me of a record I would drop early in the night at a house party. I’m with this. I feel like it offers a really good take on the original, more mellow and musical but still party oriented. Transition works really well too, the strings are clutch.
People Under the Stairs – ‘Hit the Top’ (King Kooba Oktoberphest Mix) by peopleunderthestairs

MGgost Remix (page 1) – is this live? This is live! If this is live you guys are going off. If this is samples, then you got some records I don’t have, haha. Props for this, couldn’t have been easy to hook up. It sounds like we’re on stage at the fishbucket.
People Under The Stairs – Hit The Top (MGgost Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

Doc Delay Remix (page 1) – Funky funky shit. Probably one of the funkier ones in the lot,. So that being said, this dude gets 1000 points for the drum fills and flams. Insane programming, some next level shit. And then you get the breakdown. Everyone needs to check this out for a good example of how a remix “breaks it down”. Harmonica? Check.
People Under The Stairs – Hit the Top (Doc Delay Revision) by peopleunderthestairs

B. Cause (page 1) – Smooth as it can come with nice change ups. Again, a perfect b-side compliment to the original. If I was working at a label and looking to hook up a b-side compliment to a a-side, this would be a great look.
People Under The Stairs – Hit The Top (DJ B.Cause Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

L.O.V.E. Mix (page 1) – As soon as this came on I was open. I remember reading about how back in the day Puffy would give you 15 seconds for a beat to catch your attention. This had me at jump, I was like oh shit, its on. And for those of you checking things on a laptop, try to imagine being in a packed club and hearing the horns come in, transitioning to the beat! Stampede kid! Damn, why couldn’t have Double K’s verse come back in tight on beat?!!
People Under The Stairs – ‘Hit the Top’ ( L-O-V-E Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

Beat Doctor Remix (page2) – Dub is the original remix, so this gets 400 points and a black star for going that route. Slowed the verse down and hooked it up, well done. BO!
People Under the Stairs-‘Hit the Top’ (BeatDoctor remix) by peopleunderthestairs

DJ Didac (page 3) – 674 points for the old school hit the top in the beginning. Programming is dope and actually compliments the verse pattern. Instant head-nod. I was on this, a remix that sounds like the producer was really listening to the lyrics and contributing a complimentary beat. Hooked the breakdown up too!
People Under The Stairs – Hit The Top (DJ Didac Likes to Party Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

J-Squared Breakdown (page 3) – There it is, a nice blend of the beat breathing, the lyrics riding the beat and a little dub up beat to nod the remix element. Broke it down with the filter and new programming. Even chopped it up for you. Very nice.
People Under The Stairs – ‘Hit the Top’ ( J-Squared Breakdown Remix) by peopleunderthestairs

Skatepark Soundsystem Remix (page 7) – I like what they did here, and you can tell they were paying special attention to the lyrics by little things they threw in the back. Tastefully done.
People Under The Stairs – ‘Hit The Top’ (生き方 Skatepark Soundsystem Remix) by peopleunderthestairs


AND THE WINNER IS….

It was close man, so close, but the way the producer handled the breakdown came to the deciding factor. DJ DOC DELAY WINS! Why? His breakdown kicked serious ass, and it would probably get more spins than the original version on a twelve inch.

2nd Place: Four way tie between FDel, McGost, L.O.V.E., and King Kooba. Here’s why they didn’t take first: McGost lost me on the breakdown, I like jazz and all, but it didn’t keep time with the partying and handclapping in the back. L.O.V.E remix would have won hands down but completely fell apart when double k’s verse came back in (which really hurt me because I thought this was the bangenest beat), King Kooba really professional I just wish he had done a little more during the breakdown. FDel was dope but for sample clearance issues I would have to tuck this one away (that;s a REALLY obvious loop – I think that song was a billboard #1 for like a year when it came out)

My Dream remix 12”:
A Side

People Under The Stairs Hit The Top (Vocal)
People Under The Stairs Hit The Top (Inst)
King Kooba Octoberfest Remix (Vocal)

BSide

Delay Remix (Vocal)
Delay Remix (Inst)
Fdel Remix (Vocal)

Many thanks again to everyone who participated, It’s very humbling to hear how dope everyone is, it makes me grateful we’ve had so much support over the years when most of yall are just as dope. I tried to justify my picks and reasoning behind it, remember there is no “best” it’s just music man. And lastly, sorry for the delay in announcing the winner, we just got back from tour in Africa and I wanted to give each remix the attention it deserved.

PEACE!

Thes One

This remix contest is sponsored by Vans & SoundCloud. For more information on People Under the Stairs and the critically acclaimed Carried Away record click here.

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Posted by: Jonthecorner on December 3, 2009 @ 12:31 PM
Posted in: Contests

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