Greetings. Michele Myers here. I DJ every Friday night at 9pm on KEXP. And every week at 12, I choose one of my favorite records and bring you tracks and stories on it. I call this the Midnight Album Spotlight.
This Friday it’s Verve Remixed, Volume 1. Verve Remixed is a series of releases where vintage and newer jazz recordings are remixed by today’s electronic DJs and producers. The whole series is dope. But Volume 1 continues to be my favorite.
My favorite track of the album (and the series) is “Wait ‘Till You See Him” — where German lounge-jazz-electronic artist De-Phazz re-interprets the velvety voice and straight-to-the-heart delivery of jazz great Ella Fitzgerald. This song is like walking into a futuristic space lounge where a hologram of Ella sings to you, looking straight into your eyes.
Another favorite is the Shirley Horn track remixed by UK electronics wizards Rae and Christian. It has more of a saucy feel. And there’s this cool animated video to go with it:
The original of Nina Simone’s song “See-Line Woman” is so funky and simple that it feels really current and it’s a natural for re-mix. So when New York City club, disco and underground team Masters of Work re-mixed it, they just layer on the warmth and beats. Here’s a vid of the original song. Sassy Nina Simone directs her band and the audience while she sings like the royalty she is:
Verve Remixed, Volume 1 also has Billie Holiday, Sarah Vaughan, Shirley Horn and Brazilian singer Astrud Gilberto on the vocals and these songs hit the mix by producers like Thievery Corporation, Tricky, and Richard Dorfmeister (of Kruder & Dorfmeister). All of the Verve Remixed collections are a gorgeous mix of the cinematic and organic. But Volume 1 flows the best from start to end. The flow is something I look for in a release, since I pick out songs for my show and the documentaries all week — I want to just put a record on and let it take me away.