Words by Daniel Isenberg (@StanIpcus)
Summer fun is never complete without a dope soundtrack. When you’re setting up your barbecue, and getting all the food and drinks and chairs and all that together, it’s important to never forget that key element to set the mood right for your guests—music. But hiring a DJ costs money, and crafting your own playlist takes time, so to save you a few chips and some ticks on the clock, we compiled a list of twelve DJ mixes available online for you to throw on this summer. And if you’re too busy grinding to party, well, these mixes will sound great in your whip, headphones, or office speakers, too. Crack all twelve open below.
1. DJ Jazzy Jeff & MICK – Summertime 5
DJ Jazzy Jeff is the man behind arguably the most popular—and dopest—summertime hip-hop song ever, “Summertime” with the Fresh Prince. A few years back, Jeff linked up with mixtape specialist MICK (formerly known as Mick Boogie) to release a Summertime tape filled with handpicked goodies for the warmer months. Well, they’re back this summer with their fifth installment from the series, and if you’re a fan of the previous volumes, this one will be right up your alley. You’ll hear everything from Diamond D to Super Cat to Stevie Wonder on this mix, so just press play (above), find some shade (or A/C), and let these guys do the rest. Also, peep MICK’s Outkast rarities and remixes mix that we premiered back in April here.
2. DJ Doo Wop – Coolout 2014
We just spoke to Doo Wop for our latest Mixtape Memories feature, but this man is not stuck in the past. Yes, the legendary Bronx DJ is still out here lacing us with flavor. His latest mix is called Coolout 2014, and it’s made up entirely of smooth selections from the year 2000. Plus, it features a customary rap intro by Wop himself, and some sick blends (peep the Jay Z and Mya “Best of Me (Remix)” flip at about 6:30 in, crazy).
3. UpNorthTrips – Alchemix: 1st Infantry 10th Anniversary – 10 Years of Alchemist (2004-2014)
Our brothers at UpNorthTrips are always on point with the mixes, thanks to the masterful ideas of Ev Boogie, and The Vinylcologist’s skills on the wheels. For their latest mix, they celebrate the 10th anniversary of The Alchemist’s compilation album 1st Infantry by highlighting one ALC cut from each of the past ten years. And you already know the selection is fuego (Nas and Prodigy “Tick Tock,” Cam’ron “Wet Wipes,” Boldy James “Moochie,” etc). Good stuff, gents.
4. Trackstar the DJ – Ghost Stories: Ghostface Killah’s Storytelling Raps
Also sponsored by UpNorthTrips, and in partnership with The Smoking Section and Rap Fan, DJ Trackstar put together a thorough mix of all Ghostface Killah story raps for this exceptional mix appropriately titled Ghost Stories. If you’re a Ghost fan, a Wu-Tang Clan fan, or fan of story raps in general, this is a must listen.
5. DJ Evil Dee – Live From Headquarterz 5/30/14
Have you ever seen DJ Evil Dee live? Either at a Black Moon show, or in a hip-hop club? The man is a fucking beast on the wheels. Thankfully for all of us, he threw one of his recent guest sets on DJ Premier’s Live From Headquarterz radio show up on his Soundcloud page, which features all types of dope underground rap music. This is nothing but boom bap realness by artists like Sean Price, Redman, Pro Era, D.I.T.C., and many more. Straight head nod shit.
6. Frank the Butcher & DJ7L – Bad Boy Original Samples Mix
Boston representatives Frank the Butcher and DJ7L just dropped a very tight mix made up of all samples from Bad Boy’s extensive catalog of hits, and it’s great. This is a fun one to throw on in the background when you’re hanging out this summer. You’ll hear the original records for classic jams by Biggie, The LOX, Diddy, Shyne, and more, tightly blended together for your nostalgic enjoyment.
7. DJ Wreckineyez & Asher Roth – Aerobical Radical Magical
Asher Roth and his boy DJ Wrekineyez started a mix series called Radical Magical a while back, and their latest drop is titled Aerobical Radical Magical, and it’s filled with nothing but classic dance and party songs that you can’t help but have a blast listening to. If your pool or beach party needs a pick-me-up, throw this one on. With songs like Snap’s “The Power,” Dee-Lite’s “Groove Is in the Heart,” and Marky Mark’s “Good Vibrations,” you’ll have a full-fledged bikini dance-off poppin’ in no time.
8. The Diggers Union – Enjoy and Be Educated #1420 – I Miss Fat Beats
Our family at The Diggers Union is responsible for one of the most slept on weekly Internet radio shows/podcasts around. These dudes have been getting busy for dumb long, whether you’ve been paying attention or not. Every Saturday afternoon they go in for two hours, and each mix has a specific theme. The recent mix we’ve picked to include for the purpose of this list is their ode to Fat Beats (RIP), and it’s made up of all records that were copped at the legendary record store by the TDU crew. It’s nothing but hip-hop joints by everyone from Styles P to Cormega to Camp Lo to O.C. Check this out, and then get familiar with more of their shows here.
9. Chairman Mao – Across 135th Street – Enjoy Rap Music (and Beats)
Chairman Mao has been a force in the rap journalism game for years, and now, via Red Bull Music Academy, the ego trip Don Dada laces us with a mix of newish rap music (and beats) to enjoy by dudes like Roc Marciano, Meyhem Lauren, the late great J Dilla, and more. You can’t go wrong with Mao on the mix. Shouts to egotripland!
10. J Rocc – The Get On Down Mix
West Coast DJ/turntablist J Rocc (of Beat Junkies, Stones Throw fame), recently posted a mix to his Soundcloud page made up entirely of records that were sent to him as a contest prize from one of our favorite online outlets Get On Down. It’s only 25 minutes long, but it’s packed with crack. You’ll hear classic joints by The GZA, Lord Finesse, James Brown, Boogie Down Productions, and more. And this ain’t no pause tape. J Rocc shows you how to do this, son!
11./12. Chopstar/Eric Dingus – Houston Appreciation Weekend (Mixes)
Regardless of your geography, summertime is the perfect weather for that slooooowwww, Southern, chopped and screwed sizzurp shit. In celebration of Drake’s recent Houston Appreciation Weekend, October’s Very Own Soundcloud page posted two HAW mixes by Texas DJs—one by DJ collective the Chopstars, and the other by Austin’s own Eric Dingus. I can’t front, hearing “Believe Me” screwed up like this is ill. Feel these.
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