Sunday, June 22, 2008

Steinski- remix as artform

Steinski (born Steve Stein) claims that he's no mash-up artist and he's right about that. And while Girl Talk will get much more attention for putting out yet another in growing list of sudden pay-what-you like releases, some credit should be given to one of his musical forefathers.

Originally coming to notice for his brainy, creative remix of G.L.O.B.E. and Whiz Kid "Play That Beat," Steinski and partner Double Dee (Doug DiFranco) made history by piling on sonic cultural references from all over the map, pushing the whole idea of 'remix' to a new art level with "The Lesson." The problem was that they didn't (and couldn't afford to) clear all the samples, a situation which still plagues the classic track and its two follow-ups to this day.

"The Lesson" appeared on a few hip hop compilations and now appears on Steinski's own compilation on Illegal Art (which also happens to be Girl Talk's label) called What Does It All Mean? Like GT, the label proudly flaunts copyright clearance and the idea of 'fair use' for its multi-sample kaleidoscope of music, which means that like the other compilations his work has appeared on, it may not be available for long.

For now though, the good folks at Illegal Art have offered up the three tracks that made Steinski a hero in the hip hop world:

The Payoff Mix

Lesson Two

Lesson Three

Plus you can listen to an interview with Steinski talking about the origin of the Lessons. As Howard Tate once said, get it while you can.


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