2014 Pemberton Music And Arts Festival

Source: Andrew Chin / Getty

Today’s lean music business is forcing artists and producers to take their careers into their own hands. They have resorted to releasing material on free streaming services like SoundCloud and Audiomack, with the hopes that they will gain legions of followers, and ultimately attract the attention of record labels. Clever performers also remake current hit songs as a way to garner attention from blogs, websites and message boards.

Whether you’re looking for something new to vibe out to at your desk, or want to hear an updated version of your favorite song, here are a couple of mashup projects and remixes that are sure to make it on your playlists.

FAKE UZUMI – “wellDAMN”

Virginia producer/DJ Fake Uzumi reworked several of the standout records from Kendrick Lamar’s platinum-selling DAMN album. Flipping Lamar’s song “Pride” with some house drums, Uzumi gives the song an entirely new feel. He manages to do the same for the singles off the album, “Humble” and “DNA.” As he proudly states on his SoundCloud page, “evrythng on ths page, i produced. thnk yu, come again.” This is another name that might be breaking out of the musical fairgrounds of Virginia sooner rather than later.

Vacations – “More Love”

From the looks of it, John McSwain, aka Vacations, is a rather busy man. When he’s not directing and editing content pieces for major brands, he doubles as a Sade-loving music producer. We all know Drake’s love for Sade runs deep, but Vacations took things to a new level by blending the instrumentals from Drake’s “playlist” More Life with Sade’s catalog of music. Featuring the vocals from songs like “Lover’s Rock,” “Skin,” and “Give It Up,” this blend offers a cool interpretation of tunes we already love. At least we know if there are any visuals on the way, they’ll be in McSwain’s good hands.

Ed. Note: If you’re looking to download the project with a bonus version of “Passionfruit,” check it out here.

James Fauntleroy – “James Joint II”

Paying homage to the celebratory “holiday” that is 4/20, audio wizard James Fauntleroy gave the people his own version of Rihanna’s song “James Joint,” off her acclaimed Anti album. To be honest, Fauntleroy has impacted the music industry tremendously over the last couple of years, whether he’s behind the scenes or in the spotlight, and his Soundcloud page is nothing but pure heat. We can’t help but wonder if there will ever be a Cocaine 80’s reunion.

psåul – “wanna see nirvana but”

We’ve covered the mysterious producer psåul before with his remixx of Childish Gambino’s “Redbone,” but it’s his flip of Frank Ocean’s “Nights” that lands him here again. He takes the record and pitches it down, which seems like a simple change, but it adds an entirely different tone to the song. As his material slowly goes public, we can only wonder what song he’ll add his touch to next.

 

Cookin Soul – Mask Off vs Redbone

What’s better than remixing one of the best songs of the moment? Taking TWO of the best songs out, blending them together, and creating something that you never would’ve figured would work, but does. Spanish DJ Cookin’ Soul is known for his next-level production, as well as his penchant for taking songs so incredibly different from each other and somehow finding the pocket to make it work. I didn’t know I’d like a Future/Childish Gambino mashup, but here we are.