Mash Up For What?

by Belle Waring on June 6, 2014

So, a new DJ Earworm mashup. This one was getting a lot of bitching in comments, but I like it a lot. Partly it’s because many were complaining that the inclusion of “Happy” made it bad, and I really like the song “Happy.” Partly because it’s “only” five songs. This is funny to me because I have been listening to mashups/bootlegs for a long time, and for many years there were always only two songs, and that was often even the titling: Song A vs Song B, or Artist A vs Artist B. One of the best mashups ever is dsico’s “Love Will Freak Us” (Get Your Freak On vs Love Will Tear Us Apart) (Missy Eliot vs Joy Division obvs.).

Another early classic is Freelance Hellraiser’s “The Strokes vs Christina Aguilera ‘A Stroke of Genie-us.'” I am entirely certain that the popularity of this bootleg made Christina Aguilera’s people write/produce songs for her differently. Really, her music was no question influenced by how good this sounded. (Now you’re going to tell me that there’s still Christina Aguilera in there, so “good” in that previous sentence is not being employed properly but…OK. Don’t like it. It was ground-breaking, though. I think it came out in 2002.

I feel obliged to warn you that this video contains scenes of…well, unrelieved priapism? There is no reason that a man crashing through the successive stories of a normal Asian apartment building, and convincing his neighbors to join him in mimicry of unsatisfied sexual behavior should be more sexual or more salacious than girls shaking their almost-naked asses at you and performing sexual congress with the wall of Jason Derulo’s dressing room or whatever, but somehow it is. Zoë says it’s more disturbing “because they look like real people.” This is right; we expect impossible plastic beauties from around the world to shake their money-makers right into the camera. An ordinary Chinese dude in sweatpants dry-humping an old TV is…more sexual? This can’t be right, but it’s right? Anyway, NSFW in some illogical way that is fully clothed and has no one touching anyone. This combines with the ordinary people in the video for “Happy” in a humorous way.

Next time: is Iggy Azalea a drag queen? Is this a kind of reverse blackface where you take the rhymes you want from a woman MC from South Florida and then repackage them in a model-perfect white blonde?



Peter Hovde 06.06.14 at 8:05 pm

Thank you for Love Will Freak us.


kent 06.06.14 at 8:07 pm

What makes a good mashup?

Probably my personal favorite is

(warning: rickroll)

just because it came as a shock to learn that these 2 particular songs, occupying such vastly different places in the ‘cool’ spectrum, are so astonishingly similar.

Another fave of mine, again due to the “wtf” aspect:

Probably all this is another way of saying that my enjoyment of music may be a tad too left-brained….


lemmy caution 06.06.14 at 9:38 pm

Salt N Pepa & The Stooges – Push It/No Fun


Steve Ruble 06.06.14 at 9:52 pm

I don’t think “Turn Down for What” is more disturbing “because they look like real people,” I think it’s more disturbing because it looks like the people don’t want to be doing what they are doing and are being forced to do it by some external force (“the power of the beat”, or some such, I suppose). I find the expressions on the face of the first woman right before she “succumbs” to be particularly disconcerting – a woman fearfully shaking her head “no” and then having her clothes ripped off isn’t something I like seeing very much.

Extracted from that context, I guess the parts of the “Turn Down for What” video in the mashup are pretty funny.


ChristianPinko 06.06.14 at 10:15 pm


Belle Waring 06.07.14 at 1:05 am

4: yes, that’s true. It’s just so fundamentally silly that I gave that slightly less weight. And I like so many details in the video, like what the Indian family downstairs is eating, and the posters on the bottom floor apartment, which look like they came for free from 7-11. It looks like an actual real place. The contrast with the other videos is funny (even Happy, because we’ve all seen LA in 100 videos, but never this totally ordinary block of flats that could be in about 100 cities.)


Paul Montgomery 06.07.14 at 2:30 am

I would argue the greatest ever A v B mashup from a purist sense was Loves Torn Theme (Natalie Imbruglia vs Love Unlimited Orchestra, by Futuro), just beating out my personal favourite Into You (Jarvis Cocker vs Mazzy Star, by Richard X). You have to have a seamless match of songs and vibes, rhythms that rise and fall in sync.

I followed the mashup scene closely from start to finish. Every man and his dog was doing a Get Your Freak On mashup at the time, hard to say one was better than the other.


bad Jim 06.07.14 at 6:18 am

The ruthlessness of “Happy” annoys me: “Clap along if you feel like a room without a Ruth”. As best I can recall none of my relatives or classmates has or had that name, but it doesn’t seem like something to celebrate.


skippy 06.07.14 at 10:49 pm

i’m old school; i like rapture riders, come closer together, hollaback girl of constant sorrow, and no one takes your freedom, on whicj i expound over at my place.


skippy 06.07.14 at 10:52 pm

which.” on which i expound.


roy belmont 06.08.14 at 3:52 am

bad Jim
That would be a ruthless room.


Shelley 06.08.14 at 5:27 pm

What’s wrong with “Happy”? It’s tolerable because there’s an undertone of sadness in the harmony. So it’s not just a Hallmark card.


godoggo 06.08.14 at 6:44 pm

It’s awfully repetitive. It has a lot of repetition. It keeps saying the same thing again and again again. And you hear it everywhere. Doesn’t matter where you go, there it is. Everywhere. It’s ubiquitous. The same thing. Again and again. Over and over. Happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy happy. It’s very repetitive.


Corey Robin 06.08.14 at 8:04 pm

This version of “Happy” redeemed it for me. But I’m not objective on the subject matter.


William Timberman 06.09.14 at 12:48 am

Too much. Too soon. We are VERY quick animals, we. Sometimes I feel way too mortal — it’d be nice to stick around for another hundred years. I could learn Chinese, watch whiteness shrink to its proper dimensions, sing the body electric in a world of 10 billion. No matter. If I don’t do it, you know my offspring will….


Sebastian H 06.09.14 at 5:19 am

I’m sure everyone has heard it, but the Jarod Ripley mashup of Adele and Britney Spears Rolling Till The World Ends is pretty amazing in how seamlessly it pairs Adele’s vocals with essentially all of Britney’s song.


godoggo 06.09.14 at 3:14 pm

You’re sure? Really? I haven’t and won’t


godoggo 06.09.14 at 3:46 pm

I suppose that comment wasn’t necessary. Please feel free to like what you like


Pat 06.09.14 at 4:15 pm

Kent, check out Guilty Pleasures volume 2, the “Rickrawked” concept album. Each entry is like that—you’ve probably picked the best one, although I have a particular soft spot for the entry mixing it with “Don’t You Want Me Baby.”

Skippy, yes. I was wondering how the thread missed out on “Rapture Riders” as the definitive A plus B entry. Beatles vs. NIN, my head tells me you’re probably right, but my heart is still with the combination of “Come Together” with Duran Duran’s “Come Undone”… probably because I think I was 14 and stranded in the suburbs with only Alternative Nation when that song came out….

Wait. “Rapture Riders” was a Go Home Productions mashup—how did I forget about Mark Vidler? Especially in the context of the “A plus B” sub-genre, as Vidler really might be the best of that. Anyone remember his track with “My Neck, My Back” laid over the I Dream of Jeannie? As I recall, he stopped hosting all his own mashups online some time ago… or maybe they’re being sold somewhere?

Belle Waring, you’ve been doing your homework! Quality assortment. On the Missy Elliot video, this is a bit think-y, but I think that she might be the most mashuppable artist of all time. I haven’t got anything more than an intuition about this, but my own collection seems to have a surfeit of examples. Somewhat related, and also on your point about Christina Aguilera’s output being affected by “Stroke of Genie” (and, yeah, love that one), there’s a story I’ve never confirmed but have heard multiple times that the A Plus D mashup “Decepta-freak-on” so impressed Missy Elliott or her label that they made it one of the official b-side remixes on a re-release of the single.

godoggo, your Sam I Am impression is noted with arch appreciation.


Paul Davis 06.09.14 at 11:42 pm

Kent @2 .. before concluding that Teen Spirit and Never Gonna Give You up are astonishly similar, I think you might want to get familiar with the capabilities of modern pitch shifting processing.


godoggo 06.10.14 at 2:24 am


Pat 06.10.14 at 7:08 am

… godoggo, I think I’m going to need an explanation for that. I’m sure it’s something obvious, but … yeah, completely lost.


godoggo 06.10.14 at 7:51 pm

“arch appreciation”

I googled Arch Foot Fetish.



candle 06.10.14 at 8:23 pm

They may be relatively similar in genre (Madonna + Depeche Mode) but this is one of my favourites for the same kind of reasons people have been mentioning:

It’s one of those in which two songs go together well enough to make you wonder why they didn’t write it like that in the first place.


godoggo 06.11.14 at 12:01 am

It occurs to me that some sort of joke about arch support might have ended up being funnier. I’m not that fast on my feet sometimes.


skippy 06.12.14 at 6:26 pm

thx pat

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