The Mixtape. It has become a major player in the music industry. A quick and easy way to get your music out there as an artist and/or DJ. A quick and easy way to speak your voice to the world. So, in celebration of this, we offer up our top mixtapes of 2016.
We start our list with DJ Rampage Global's well researched roots-reggae mix, Humble Mi: Reggae Sequel 13. A spiritual being and an avid practitioner of Rastafari, the conscious vibe of the mixtape features tracks from Fikir Amlak, Dezarie, Meleku, Luciano, Hempress Sativa and of course Jah9. Humble Mi gives the listener a sense of tranquility and good vibes. The mixtape provides a one-of-a-kind experience for conscious reggae lovers awakening them to a journey scribed by multi-faceted authors. DJ Rampage Global is currently touring as the official DJ for Ms. Lauryn Hill with the Ms. Lauryn Hill Band.
Electric Punanny always brings the fire with their series of mixtapes that put you in that New York state of mind. Vol. 6 is no different. An exploration of all things hip-hop, Afrobeat, Carribean funk, you name it, if it's hot, it gets a chance to shine on this mixtape. We were able to catch up with the dynamic duo, Jasmine Solano and MeLo-X, while they performed over the summer in Los Angeles and they were as gracious as their sound provides. Listen to the mixtape below and don't miss an opportunity to see these two live - it's raw chemistry and electric vibes.
Up next we have Los Angeles' own DJ Crooks and his Rockers Room mixtape series. We particularly enjoyed his recent Grammy tribute, where he big ups all the artists nominated for a Grammy in the Reggae Album of the Year category. The tape features tracks from Raging Fyah, J Boog, SOJA and more. According to DJ Crooks, his goal is to expand on his growing listeners by turning Rockers Room into a weekly radio show that will eventually feature Top Ten lists, artist interviews and more. We're looking forward to the upcoming growth of the Rockers Room in 2017!
Next up we have a reminder of summer. As the cold frost rips through Los Angeles, we miss the summer heat and some of our favorite summer mixes. The one that makes the list is DJ Enroute's Summer Heat Vol, 2. The mix, combining the summer's best dancehall, Afrobeat, soca and hip-hop - it was a poolside and BBQ treat. Now, as we move into the new year, it can give you back the warm summer vibes you've been missing while keeping warm this winter. By way of Belize, DJ Enroute has been busy playing gigs in Los Angeles and is the newest addition to Rampage Sound Global.
Maybe we are missing the summer a little too much because next up we have the Bay Area's finest DJ Green B and her dancehall summer mix titled Fever Summa 16 Dancehall Mixx. A straight dancehall journey. No frills. Just good new dancehall vibes. The feeling comes through the speakers and can make any listener feel as though they are on The Rock mid-summer. The mix features fire riddims; "All Inclusive," "Hey Yo," "Ova Dweet" and more. The upful Jamaican summer feeling mixed to precision. Pree below:
Kabaka Pyramid's Accurate mixtape was fire and it is quite possibly one of the best albums of the year, mixtape or not. A dancehall reggae hip-hop adventure, fused with soul and reverence. An ode to the old New York hip-hop; a map to a new journey through these gates and into a universe uncharted. Joined by friends from Chronixx to Protoje, flexing over Brand Nubian beats, it was a sound to behold. We were so taken aback by the mixtape, we did our own analysis of the adventure here, back when the mixtape premiered. It still has relevance now and still feels like when we first heard it every time we press play.
Stay tuned on KingstonToLA.com for brand new #MixtapeMusings in 2017.