Mr Mendel – ‘Monday Is Ok’ Ransom Note Mix
This week's Monday mix will have you feeling all warm and fuzzy inside. It's a little funkier, a little smoother and contains a whole lot of soul.
Amsterdam's Mr Mendel has perfected the art of modernising the classics with his organic approach to mixing and editing. It was quite a switch from Hip-Hop to Soul, Disco and Afro music but we're sure as hell glad he made it. You can catch Mr Mendel spinning some sexy tunes at a number of Amsterdam's finest nights such as I Love Vinyl, Wicked Jazz Sounds and Doka, plus he also curates the Tropical mix for music discovery channel 22Tracks Amsterdam. He'll be making an appearance at Southport Weekender early this May so head on over if you want to get down to some funky grooves.
Get on listening and rest assured you won't be finding no "gangstarr, gangstarr, wu-tang" in this mix (his words, honest);
Did you know Mr Mendel is an unnaturally enthusiastic banker from James Bond?
Yes, we actually met recently through our mutual friend Miss Moneypenny.
I’m trying real hard to make a connection between this over the top Bond character and yourself but I’m assuming your name doesn’t reference this at all unless the banker had a secret obsession with old school soul music that I’m unaware of?
I actually got the name from Mr Wendal, a no-one, an old bum, who was into Arrested Development at the time.
You started mixing at a young age with your first paid gig at 15, can you remember any of the tracks you played?
Yes the playlist was something like: gangstarr, gangstarr, DJ premier, wu-tang, DJ premier, gangstarr, wu-tang, wu-tang….
Are you self-taught in the art of producing?
Well I listen to a lot of the masters all the time. That has taught me a lot. But there’s still a lot to be learned.
What software do you generally use when editing, remixing and sampling the golden oldies?
Logic and feeling.
There aren’t many that are capable of touching classic tunes and manage to create a piece that compliments the original but you sir are an exception. Do you have a certain process when approaching a new project?
Thank you, that’s very nice to hear. I try to stay true to the original and I like ‘organic’ sounds. I guess that makes it less intrusive when I add some.
You have said previously that you respect the opinions of Rahaan and Vogel when presenting new material, how and when did your friendship with the pair form?
Laughing in the record shop… naturally.
You’re playing Southport Weekender in a few weeks time. Do you have any surprises lined up in your set for the Southport audience?
Yes very excited about that! I didn’t have time to pack yet, so the surprise is still on me as well. But I’ll keep it soulful, uplifting and a bit edgy.
Let's mosey on over to the mix then…
Where was the mix recorded?
In Dr No’s lair.
Where did you find all the funk for the mix? Did you have to call in a favour from George Clinton?
Everywhere and nowhere really. Record shops, internet, friends…
What would be the ideal setting to listen to the mix?
At Southport Weekender. I selected the tracks with that vibe in mind. Some disco classics paired with some deeper stuff.
What should we be wearing? What were you wearing when you made the mix?
Lots of bare skin… I was wearing my sweat pants.
Which track in the mix is your current favourite? Are there any other tracks that very nearly made the cut?
Rena – 'Dance It Off' is an all-time favourite. Hunee brought it to our attention.
I wanted to end with Ronia La Vee – 'Lead Me', an intense gospel track, but it felt like an overkill.
If you could go back to back with any DJ from throughout history, who would it be and why?
Ron Hardy and Larry Levan, although I would probably not play, only dance.
What’s more important, the track you start on or the track you end on?
The track you start sets the tone. But my favourite is always the last one.
What were the first and last records you bought?
I think Bob Marley and today I bought Derrick Laro – 'Don't stop till you get enough'.
If this mix was a cocktail, what would it taste like?
Probably pretty sweet. But on the rare occasion that I drink a cocktail, I rather have something sour.
Can you draw us a picture of what you think the mix would look like?
You would get a kids drawing. Drawing is one of my absent talents.