Wednesday, August 06, 2008

Genius of London

Song: Genius of London
Artist: Tom Tom Club vs. Fergie
Album: MTV Mash Up

I’m a fan of mash ups, the name given to a song which combines elements from two or more songs to create a different one. For the most part, a mash up usually takes the vocals from one song and lays them over the music to another. One of the first known mash ups that I had heard about (and apparently started the craze) was “Love Will Freak Us,” a mash up of Missy Elliot’s “Get Your Freak On” with Joy Division’s “Love Will Tear Us Apart.” It’s pretty wild, and like the best mash ups, it infuses two songs that seemingly could not go together at all. (You can read more about the history of the mash up, and the most popular ones, here.)

A really great left-of-center mash up in a party playlist can be a beautiful thing, confusing your audience yet getting them to bop along to something that they (sort of) know. But be warned… use them sparingly as they can certainly overstay their welcome. Haha.

Never one to shy away from cashing in on a trend, MTV released a compilation of mash ups by DJ Rob Boskamp last year. It could have been aweful, but if listened to sparingly, can be a pretty enjoyable cross-genre journey. My hands down favorite is “Genius of London,” a winning combo of Tom Tom Club’s 80’s classic “Genius of Love” (which Mariah sampled er… stole the melody for “Fantasy.”) and Fergie’s bazaar pop hit “London Bridge.” It’s a party starter for sure, even if the music from “Genius of Love” isn’t 100% recognizable.

At this point the amount of mash ups floating around the internet are pretty daunting… but do some searching, you’ll get hooked for a while.

Other favorites to find:

“A Stroke of Genius” – Christina Aguilera vs. The Strokes
“George Will Freak Us” – George Michael vs. Missy Elliot
“Ziggy at the Party” – David Bowie vs. Pink
“Take Me Out for a Milkshake” – Franz Ferdinand vs. Kelis

Just to name a few…


Some Mash ups:

Slow My Bitch Up

Hey We Will Rock You

Genius of London

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