First things first - neither P. Diddy nor any of his Bad Boy cohorts invented the remix. Musicians had been "remixing" their songs before Sean Combs was even conceived. What Bad Boy did do, however, was help make the remix as popular a trend as it is today. Starting with Puff's work with Jodeci and Mary J. Blige in the early '90s, consumers have been seeking out remixes with
heavy demand, leading up to the era we have today. Many remixes that drop today are hotter than the originals and can really give an artist commercial attention.
That being said, Bad Boy is still one of the major players in the remix biz, and have thrown a collection of new remixes together to form "We Invented the Remix," a solid disc featuring some of the better music to be released by the label in the last few years.
The album starts off strong with the remix of G-Dep's "Special Delivery," with Ghostface Killah setting the tone right off the bat. Ghost's amped vocals are followed nicely by verses from G-Dep, Keith Murray and Craig Mack. But while it's nice to hear Craig Mack back with Bad Boy, his lyrics need some work. ("I take my rap style real serious / What you think it ain't...that serious?")
Diddy gets sentimental about his lost love J-Lo on the current radio flood "I Need A Girl (Part One)," with Usher displaying some smooth vocals over the hook. Less effective is "I Need A Girl (Part Two)," this time with Ginuwine, which all but beats the theme to death.
Things get a little more rugged with the remix to "Bad Boy For Life," featuring Busta Rhymes and the always hype Mash Out Posse over a tweaked version of the original beat. The Megahertz produced track definitely gets the job done, but the track sounds a little out of control compared to the original.
112's "Peaches & Cream" with Ludacris finally sees the light of day on CD form, a song people have been clamoring for since last summer; as does the remix to "Dance With Me," with Beanie Sigel, although someone made a horrible decision by deciding to just include Beans' verse and then mix into the latter track. Why the whole song isn't included on this 56-minute disc is
The more interesting tracks are the remix to "That's Crazy," a track that tried to duplicate the success of Black Rob's "Whoa." The remix is a step up from the original and really benefits from the guest shots by Missy Elliot and Snoop Dogg. Also intriguing is the beat sample of "Sweet Dreams (Are Made of These)" on Faith Evans' "You Get No Love (Remix)." The new beat makes the
song even more accessible to clubs, though it uses a somewhat played out beat.
The most surprising aspect of this album is that its weakest links are found in all three tracks featuring Bad Boy's crown jewel, Biggie. The remix to "Notorious B.I.G." brings almost nothing to the table, save the added Busta vocal scratch in the chorus, while Carl Thomas' "Woke Up in the Morning" is nothing more than a reworking of the already reworked Biggie joint "My Downfall," complete with some of the same rhymes from the original. Worse yet is Ashanti's "Unfoolish," featuring the same beat as Biggie's remix of "One More Chance," (it's time to put that DeBarge sample to rest already) complete with the first verse from "Fuckin' You Tonight." Does Puff think nobody is going to notice these vocals are old? Do these vocals even need to be here?
Aside from the tracks featuring Biggie, there are many quality tracks included here. There is something for almost everyone; both fans of club hits and R&B tracks will find this right up their alley. He might not have invented it, but he knows how to pull it off.