Sunday, February 17, 2008

After I heard a lot of hype about the recent performance of Kanye West and Daft Punk at the Grammy’s, I finally decided to check it out. Being a huge fan of Daft Punk, I was already mildly intrigued to see what all the buzz was about. Not only was I pretty impressed, but I also started to think about how brilliant this creative mixture is. I myself am not a huge fan of hip hop, but listening and watching Kanye West deliver a new spin to a somewhat dated track was both very interesting as well as entertaining. The single itself combines two very different genres of music, hip hop/rap and dance/techno, and creates a really epic sound that crosses over between the different genres. Of course this has been happening for years, remixing older tracks with new hiphop/rap based lyrics and turning them into new again, however
Daft Punk of recent have been touring to promote their newest album, and the original track itself, “Harder, Better, Faster, Stronger” debuted only in 2001.

This also reminds me of another band, Ratatat, who recently did something very similar. The band, Ratatat, is a New York based group who play electronic alternative music. After releasing their first self titled album in 2004, Ratatat teamed up with multiple R&B/Rap/HipHop artists and remixed a majority of their singles in the same year, and released the “Ratatat Mixed Tapes Volume 1”. After the success of both albums, Ratatat made their next album in 2006, named, “Classics”, and then the following year in 2007 remixed “Classics” and created, “Ratatat Mixed Tapes Volume 2” (Wikipedia).

Another example would be Leslie Feist, commonly known just as “Feist”. After the success of her first album, “Let it Die” in 2004, and then in 2006 released “Open Season”, which consisted of remixes and alternative versions of her first released album. Although remixing is nothing completely new, musical artists are now branching out and teaming up with other artists to renew their already seemingly fresh work, and putting a spin on their own sound by collaborating. In the case of Daft Punk, by teaming up with Kanye West not only boosts the popularity of older tracks and albums, it also boosts their newest albums and concert tours. In the situation with Ratatat, instead of putting out just one album a year, they’re able to produce double that and create a larger fan base by crisscrossing popular music genres. I feel as though this is a new step into the future of popular music and sound, and the way bands can reach a bigger and better fan base in the years to come by crossing genres of music and collaborating new music.
This seems like a new way of reinventing predominantly new music.

"Ratatat." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. 15 Feb 2008, 16:20 UTC. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 18 Feb 2008 <>.

"Open Season (Feist album)." Wikipedia, The Free Encyclopedia. 25 Jan 2008, 23:57 UTC. Wikimedia Foundation, Inc. 18 Feb 2008 <>.


I. Reilly said...

your post makes me think of my initial comments regarding girl talk's music and the reinscription of musical genres that takes place in these mash-ups. (see felicia's blog for her post on girl talk.) as you've already noted, these changes are widespread and are appearing in a number of different cross-generic collaborations. daft punk meets kanye; feist meets gonzales; ratatat remixes jay z and notorious b.i.g.

welcome to the future of musics (pl.),

I. Reilly said...

a month today since your last post. why not post something new today?