The explosion of Moombahton has been pretty crazy to watch, and the music itself has clearly matured a great deal since Dave Nada first slowed down Sidney Samson and Afrojack in a basement in Maryland. Last week Mad Decent dropped Dave’s Moombahton compilation, including Munchi’s “Hope,” which got singled out for a great review on Pitchfork. Like anyone else who feels passionate about independent music, I hate Pitchfork when they unjustly tear down music I love and at the same time I’m over the moon whenever they give something I’m involved with a favorable review. It’s complicated.
Dave Nada – Moombahton (March 2010)
Tittsworth and I pushed Moombahton from the very beginning, not least of all because Dave Nada has always been a great friend and a favorite DJ/producer; we joke that the N in T ‘N’ A stands for Nada. It would be easy for me to claim to be some great visionary or take some credit for blowing up Moombahton, but I have to admit a little uneasiness at the beginning, for a number of reasons. The initial edits, while radical in vision, were musically pretty easy to make in Ableton, and you could hear the backlash immediately. It’s the same thing they have been saying about DJs forever: it’s not real music, you’re not playing an instrument, you’re only playing someone else’s music, etc etc, and all that is true to an extent – I always thought the “turntable as instrument” argument was a little fishy – but also WHO FUCKING CARES? Everyone doesn’t have to like everything, and if we have fun mixing records, slowing them down or speeding them up or playing them backwards, then that’s what we’re going to do. When we saw 500 people tearing U Street Music Hall apart to four hours of slow music last summer, we knew this wasn’t going to be a flash in the pan.
Dave Nada – Punk Rock Latino (May 2010)
The other, more immediate issue I had was that we wanted to support Dave Nada, Nadastrom & Munchi as much as possible with all the resources a record label can offer, but how were we going to make any money off of bootleg remixes? With Blow Your Head II, Mad Decent took up the gauntlet, licensing the songs and getting the Moombahton remixes approved by the original artists and labels. It’s really fucking hard to make money off of compilations. The money gets split up between the licensees and the remixers (23 artists total on the moombahton compilation), with a ton of paperwork for the label – it’s a pretty thankless job, and you’re probably talking about less money than Diplo makes to DJ for an hour. But if you look at it the other way around, he’s DJing 5000 miles away from his family in Kuala Lampur this weekend in part so he can afford to put out music on his label. We all started out djing DIY parties on the east coast and selling mix CDs and bootleg remixes on Turntable Lab, and it’s incredible to have someone not only go from that to producing #1 records for Chris Brown and Beyonce and still put on for their scene.
Nadastrom – Rum & Coke (September 2010)
So: if you like “Blow Your Head Vol 2″ but you don’t know that much about Moombahton, go back and download the first three Moombahton EPs above for free. Especially if you DJ, because this music WORKS in a sweaty club and girls love it. New Munchi Remix EP out this Tuesday, no moombahton on this one but it’s completely fucking bonkers. And grab Tittsworth & Alvin Risk “Pendejas” from Two Cuts Raw (Plant Records) and Blow Your Head II: Moombahton (Mad Decent) for free at RCRD LBL.