In the Cookie Jar —web extra
As the end of the summer comes charging toward us, we can look back on the music that kept our lazy days of summer pumping, but we can also look forward to the music that will keep us on the dance floor post-Labor Day.
If there has been a quintessential summer anthem, there has not been a better one than the gargantuan hit “My Fire,” sung by the lusciously talented Kimberly Davis. Having help from the iconic Tony Moran, and the divine Nile Rodgers (who Davis shares the stage with as part of Chic) simply makes the song that much better. While this was a peak anthem from Asbury Park to Provincetown to Rehoboth Beach this summer, it was mostly because of the wide array of remixes that were released for this track. Without fail, Tony Moran’s “Original Mix” set the standard, and gave all the other remixers a base to build from, showcasing Davis’ vocals and the insanely awesome production on the track.
The “Moto Blanco Remix” gives arguably one of the best dance floor marriages in quite some time, as the BPM and bass of the track meld perfectly with the standard Moto Blanco rhythm and signature style. The “Phil B and Leo Frappier Mass Airplay Edit” tosses a little bit of a soulful edge to Davis’ vocals and the “David Morales Epic Mix” harkens back to some of Morales’ earlier mixes, specifically the epic but as yet unreleased mix of Mariah Carey’s “Say Something” with the simplistic yet infectious production. As expected, the “Rosabel Club Remix” is one of the standouts on the three extended remixes volumes, and it’s with good reason; putting their own unique style on the track, and having an epic build to the chorus helps make this track what it has truly has become one of the hottest dance tracks this summer.
In the midst of a stellar summer for dance music, the legendary Deborah Cox dropped onto the dance floor with her own (sure to be) summer anthem, “Let The World Be Ours Tonight.” It is everything we expect from Cox and more, out-of-this-world vocals and an amazing roster of remixers who take this song to the next level. The “StoneBridge and Damien Hall” mixes give it a hypnotic and rapid-fire beat of sorts, matching sublimely with Cox’s vocals with a great consistency. Frequent Cox collaborators Tony Moran and Warren Rigg check in with what is probably the most “summer-esque” of the tracks, giving it a distinct and wonderful flavor. On each of the three tracks they have an extensive remix package, making the “Tony Moran and Warren Rigg Piano Mix” one of the standouts, adding some extra chords to the track during the choruses, simply elevating the track as well as Cox’s always amazing vocal abilities. The “Bimbo Jones Remix” matches Cox with a remix duo that is a perfect partnership, keeping the track’s original intent, yet adding some amazing drums, and featuring Cox’s vocals front and center.
Another new partnership on the dance floor has combined their superpowers to make one of the hottest tracks the season. Dance floor queen Ceevox has merged her talents with one of our favorite mistresses of the DJ booth, Tracy Young, and their efforts have created some true “Peace, Love & Music” with some help from some dance-floor legends. The original track is a hypnotic and throbbing track, with a deep vocal house vibe, perfect for a late night session. Whether it’s the “Vocal Mix” or the “Dub Mix,” Young keeps the mix consistent to its original intent, with a seamless baseline throughout. The remixers who dropped their own unique spin on the track are equally as epic. The “Eric Kupper Remix” makes it a very cool and low-key track with an almost chill vibe laced throughout. The “Barry Harris Club Mix” is everything we have grown to love from Barry Harris post-Thunderpuss: resounding builds, focus on an amazing chorus, and pulsing beats. More than ever, this shows that Harris is arguably just as good as, or even better than, he was during an epic time in the dance music industry.
Jason Dottley had some traction with his anthem for the heart, “Love Story,” a while back, but it now gets the proper remix treatment with an array of established and newer remixes, giving them some fresh material to work on. The package kicks off with the “DJ Randy Bettis & DJ Boyd Xtra Electro Mix” and it’s exactly what you would expect from Bettis & Boyd: a vibrantly electronic mix giving full attention to the verses, but keeping it fun and fresh. The “Spin Sista Symphony Mix” has an almost effortless ’90s vibe, with heavy drums, and giving the vocals slightly more attention, but layering it beautifully. The “Jose Jimenez Mix” has some strong echo on the verses, giving it an almost a capella vibe, but keeps the familiarity of the track.
Michael Cook is Out In Jersey magazine’s Entertainment Editor.