My new series of work, the crystal punch pictures and my Abstract Remix paintings were consciously conceived with a clear nod to the creative process that led to the development and creation of recorded hip hop music which also is key in the development of the musical concept of the remix.
These video essays, “Everything Is A Remix” is a clear and concise way of illustrating how darn near everything under the sun has been created. Who knew the concept of the remix is at the core of the creative process as we know it?
Back in the mid 80’s as the emergence of hip hop music moved past the Sugarhill Records era of rappers rapping over bands playing the rhythm tracks of songs early Hip Hop DJ’s played for rappers, like Chic’s “Good Times” for The SugarHill Gang, producers like Rick Rubin, Marly Marl and Public Enemy’s The Bomb Squad began to dismember the kick drum, snare, bass, guitar chords, keyboards,and horn sections along with cutting and scratching sounds to create soundscapes that captured the gritty, grimy and intoxicating sounds of live raw hip hop in its infancy.
Many musicians attacked this new creative process of making music and the seminal Brooklyn rap group, Stetsasonic, issued a rebuttal song to them in 1988 called, “Talking All That Jazz”, and I was honored to direct that songs music video in 1989. The song and concept of the video addressed and defended this creative process of sampling and hence remixing way before it became common practice in making music.
My new pictures have been assailed by some for using these same cut up, sampling and remixing ideas in my work and that’s to be expected, especially by those not familiar with the modern art practice of appropriation. However, in the beginning of the new, this is to be expected yet the work ultimately will speak for itself because everything is indeed, a remix.