Here's the story behind THIS one. It's a bit long, but bear with me.
A few years back, I used to buy nearly all of my vinyl from Turntable Lab, which is an amazing online store based in Brooklyn. (We tried to visit the LA store this year, but they've got weird opening hours on certain days, so I couldn't do it.) They got vinyl copies of The Black Album acapellas a bit before Christmas of 03, just as the album had dropped, and that coincided with my first proper spurt of making beats. At that point I was using hip hop ejay 2, but chopping my own samples and drums and importing them, so basically it was a cheap sequencing programme for me.
my CHANGE CLOTHES remix
So I copped the Black Album acapellas, and started sorting out beats that matched them. I created completely new beats for some of the tracks - and for others I used beats that I already had floating about. (One of the problems with the acapellas was that they also included singing, at times, which meant matching the singing with the beat rather than the other way round.)
I finished the project, with skits between a couple of tracks to make it flow more, and then for some reason I thought "why don't I see what Roc-A-Fella are saying?"
So I typed in "Roc-A-Fella contact details" to google, and on about the 4th page in a phone number came up. I rang it, half expecting to get some old woman somewhere in Dakota, or something. But no... I got the Roc-A-Fella offices in New York.
Whoah. I didn't know what to say.
SO I end up talking to some dude called John, who was the online A+R for Roc-A-Fella at that time, (I forget his last name now), and I get his contact details and send it to him in a jiffy bag. (These are the days before I was able to fileshare / send tracks online - dial up connection!)
my MOMENT OF CLARITY remix
A couple of weeks later, I ring up again, and he can't get rid of me quick enough, he had NO idea who I was. The CD hadn't turned up.
A week after that, I ring back, and as soon as I'd got my name out he was all friendly, "oh, the guy from the UK, yeah," saying hi and saying how much he liked my remixes. As he was talking, I realised that I had heard something odd in the background, but couldn't quite place it... then I realised he was playing my remix of "What More Can I Say" in the background.
In the Roc-A-Fella New York Offices!
I was proper made up. He said that a few people had asked about it, and he'd passed on my details.
Anyway, I told all my mates, and I was really chuffed and all that, but that was basically the end of it, cos I rang back a few weeks later, and again he couldn't get rid of me quick enough. Nothing ever came of it, no-one contacted me, and that was it. Ah well, c'est la vie, eh? It was a boost when it happened.
99 PROBLEMS remix
So here, dear reader, fianlly for you, is my Black Album remix project... unmastered, probably a bit murky sounding, but I think it still sounds vaguely cool. But then I would, wouldn't I? haha.
The Green Album (2003)
Jay-Z + Jimmy Green
See what you think. I reckon a lot of it holds up pretty well, some of it doesn't but there we go. As my first project, it's OK. I've got a soft spot for it.