Christynette

The UK's First Lady of Urban Soul.

Ne-Yo

Unreleased from 2001, Ne-Yo as "Shaffer".

Mya's Liberation

Mya's doomed fourth album.

Girl Power!

Unreleased R'n'B/UK Garage from 2001.

Local Virginia R'n'B on Demo Tape!

From collector's favorites to new unheard of heat, there is no shortage of great music to be found in Virginia.

Wednesday, December 18, 2013

Full Flava featuring CeCe Peniston: For My Baby (UK CDM) (Dome Records, 2003)

Another feature from Peniston and recorded at the beginning of a decade spent supporting other artists. This particular feature was recorded with British R&B production team Full Flava and was the first of two (the latter one "You are The Universe" was recorded in 2006) recorded with them. The original album version was a mellow R&B song but version on this CD has been remixed. It is actually an edit of the longer KT & C dance mix. The Ruff-N-Tumbe remix borrows a sample from "Heartache No. 9" from British 70s soul/funk band Delegation.

1. Radio Edit
2. Ruff N Tumbe Remix
3. KT & C Remix

Listen: Ruff N Tumble Remix








Sunday, October 27, 2013

Mary J. Blige: Be Without You (Remixes) (White Label VLS) (2006)

More white label vinyl from Blige, this time featuring rare & unofficial remixes of her 2006 song Be Without You. The first is purportedly by Eminem & Dr. Dre's team and features Shady Records rapper Stat Quo, while the second mix makes use of a sample of the Art Of Noise's 1984 song Moments In Love. I don't know much about the former remix but it does sound official, whereas the latter one is obviously a white label mix. The reverse side features an album track from Blige's 2006 album The Breakthrough. More exclusive & rare stuff brought to you by "Persnickety"...

A1 Be Without You - Shady/Aftermath Remix featuring Stat Quo
A2 Be Without You - Remix
B1 Gonna Breakthrough - Main featuring Brook

Wednesday, September 25, 2013

Mary J. Blige: House Mixes (Vol. 1) (UK Bootleg Vinyl Comp) (JMR Records, 2004)

Blige is no stranger to the house scene and even released a remix album Dance For Me in 2002. It featured house remixes of her biggest hits by top producers such as Junior Vasquez and Hex Hector and was relatively well-received. Unfortunately, some of the mixes were edited down and a lot a lot of good mixes were left off as they didn't fit the more mainstream sound that they had in mind. Alternatively, this double 12" set was circulated unofficially in 2004 and features mostly promotional and underground

Saturday, September 21, 2013

Jaki Graham: Ain't Nobody (Remixes) (VLS) (Critique, 1994)

Ain't Nobody was the lead single from Jaki's debut album on Japanese label Avex Trax and was released in 1994. It was released in the US on Critique records and reached number one on the Billboard Dance Club Play chart, which remains, to this date, her only major success in the US. The CD maxi can be found HERE, but here are additional vinyl-only remixes by Mark Picchiotti and Teri Bristol that weren't issued anywhere else. The duo later went on to remix her follow up single Absolute E-Sensual. 

A1 Glee Club Vocal
A2 Glee Club Instrumental
A3 Ain't-Appella
B1 Glee Club Dub
B2 Makes Me Tribal Mix

Listen: Glee Club Vocal

Monday, September 2, 2013

Beyoncé: Special B'Day: Unreleased, Remixes & Rare Cuts (White Label Vinyl EP) (N/A)

More white label vinyl from Beyoncé, this time featuring a selection of remixes from the B'Day era plus an unreleased track Back Up and a new version of Welcome to Hollywood (the exact same version as on the 'deluxe' edition of the album and which evidently wasn't released yet when this 12" was made.) Most of the remixes are unofficial and again, I don't know much about them. I believe that track 1 was remixed by Swizz Beatz, though I am not exactly sure; track 2 is a reggaeton remix and track 4 Irreplaceable Remix features a rap from Ghostface Killah. I don't know as if StarGate's original poppy production really goes very well with Ghost's rap; it would've sounded a lot more convincing with a darker, more urban production over it, but at around 2006 and onwards it seems record producers really got lazy. The Greenlight Remix is a real gem though. The production is pretty much the same but it's more hip hop-sounding than the original. Preview both bellow.



A1 Greenlight Remix feat. Young Buck
A2 Upgrade U (Benja Styles Remix)
A3 Welcome To Hollywood (New Version)
B1 Irreplaceable Remix feat. Ghostface Killah
B2 Ring The Alarm (Manny Faces Remix)
B3 Back Up




Listen: Greenlight Remix feat. Young Buck




Listen: Irrepleaceble Remix feat. Ghostface Killah

Tuesday, August 20, 2013

Beyoncé: Crazy In Love (The Remixes) (White Label VLS) (2003)

 Another Beyoncé rarity, this time featuring a collection of  "Crazy In Love" remixes on white label vinyl. Most were officially released but there are a few exclusives, such as an alternate take of the original  song with a rap from Rah Digga instead of Jay-Z and an alleged remix version by Just Blaze featuring another female MC, J-Boo (who was part of the Wu-Tang Clan affiliated (female) rap group Deadly Venoms.) The authenticity of the later remix is unknown, though it does appear in the producer's back catalog. Among the commercial remixes is the Rockwilder remix (track A2: 'Rnb Remix') (uncredited here), and the two full-length dance remixes by Maurice Joshua and Junior Vasquez.

A1 Lumidee - Crazy In Love*
A2 Crazy In Love (Rnb Remix) feat. Jay-Z
A3 Crazy In Love (Remix) feat. Rah Digga
A4 Crazy In Love (Just Blaze Remix) feat. J-Boo
B1 Adam 12 So Crazy Remix
B2 Maurices Nu Soul_Remix
B3 Junior's World Remix

*Obviously not Knowles. A mixtape-only release by fellow R&B artist Lumidee featuring vocal refrains from her 2003 song "Never Leave You (Uh Oh)" and different verses over the original instrumental.  Not very good. Why it is on here, I do not know, but it is rare all the same. 

Listen: Crazy In Love (Remix) feat. Rah Digga


Listen: Crazy In Love (Just Blaze Remix) feat. J-Boo

Sunday, August 4, 2013

Beyoncé: In Da Club Remixes (Bootleg Vinyl Comp) (2004)

Throwback Beyoncé from 2004 featuring a variety of remixes and rare tracks from the Dangerously In Love era and beyond on two bootleg 12" vinyls. There's remix versions of almost every track from Knowles' debut album, including remixes of Crazy In Love, Baby Boy, Me, Myself and I and Naughty Girl. The first three are unofficial remixes from white label vinyl. I don't know much about them but the remix of Me, Myself and I sounds like a sped up version of the "Eastern Delight Mix" by Punjabi MC. The remix of Naughty Girl is the "Erick Sermon Remix" and was only ever issued to promotional vinyl.

Thursday, July 4, 2013

Mary J. Blige: 8 Unreleased Gems (Bootleg Vinyl Comp) (N/A)

There is no shortage of unofficial Mary J. Blige material out there, but I find a 12" much easier to listen to than a mixtape. I absolutely loathe the snipped and often tagged versions of rare songs that most DJs stick on these compilations. Anyway... here's another bootleg vinyl from the queen of hip hop soul, this one comprising mostly of remixes and rare tracks from her 1999 eponymous album, plus a few others. I'm not sure if the remix of Time was official or not but it seems it was only ever pressed to bootleg 12" vinyl for DJs. It is basically the same as the original album version with additional rap verses by a rap artist called Quasar (QSR.) Confrontation was originally featured on Funkmaster Flex and Big Kap's 1999 album The Tunnel and was later issued on a separate disc to some editions of Mary along with Sincerity. Both the introduction and the final track Misty Blue were taken from Blige's 1998 live album The Tour. The only track which doesn't really fit in with the sound of this set is track 8 Feel Of Your

Tuesday, June 4, 2013

Brandy: Peak Performance (Promo CDM) (Atlantic, 1995)

This promotional CD was issued in limited quantities only as part of a promotional campaign in 1995 and features 3 remixes of songs from Norwood's debut album, two of which are almost impossible to find. The mix of "Best Friend" was not available on CD single and is quite a find; it features all new vocals and different, slower production; it was only available on a handful of releases - all promotional - including here, promotional radio CD and vinyl.  The mix of "I'm Yours'', as far as I know, is not available anywhere else but here. It uses the same vocals as the original but features a gospelly piano accompaniment instead. It's not one of Norwood's best songs by far but this mix definitely brings about something different. The mix of "I Wanna Be Down" can be found as a B-side to Norwood's follow-up hit "Baby" and features Queen Latifah, MC Lyte and Yo-Yo. It was recently released again on  the US edition of "The Best of Brandy" as a bonus track.

1. I Wanna Be Down (The Human Rhythm Hip Hop Remix)
2. I'm Yours (Piano Remix)
3. Best Friend (K.C. Full Mix)

Listen: I'm Yours (Piano Remix)


Listen: Best Friend (K.C. Full Mix)

Brandy: Baby (Promo CDM) (Atlantic, 1995)


This CD was only ever sent to radio stations in the US and features five different mixes of Brandy's 1995 hit Baby by D'Angelo, Allstar and others. All sound significantly different to the original album version, particularly MK's G-Mix and D'Angelo's Uptown Mix. Only the All Star Party Mix featured on CD singles in the US; MK's G-Mix and the Club Mix featured on CD singles in the UK, but these are as just as rare. 

1. All Star Party Mix
2. Random Noize Remix
3. MK's G-Mix
4. Uptown Remix
5. Club Mix

Listen: MK's G-Mix

Listen: Uptown Remix

Sunday, April 7, 2013

Mary J. Blige: Miss Mary J Blige An Artist Of Her Generation: 8 Unreleased Bombs (Bootleg EU Vinyl Comp) (2000)

Here's another Mary J. bootleg comp on vinyl and the third and final one I could find.  This 12" comprises of remixes and rare tracks from between 1996-1999, including three remixes from the "My Life" album, a feature with Dr Dre from 1999 and two non-album cuts - the D'Angelo-produced "Everyday" (a b-side track from the "Share My World" era) and the festive track "Christmas In The City" with Angie Martinez (as featured on the 1997 A&M compilation "A Very Special Christmas 3.") I don't know if this compilation is related to the other two or not (the other two were found in the US, this one came from Europe) but there are definately a lot of good throwback tracks given a new lease of life here. The other two vinyls can be found HERE and HERE.

A1 Deep Inside (Mobb Deep Remix)
A2 Everyday
A3 The Message feat. Dr Dre & Rell
A4 All Night Long feat. LL Cool J
B1 I Love You feat. Smif-N-Wessun
B2 Love Is All We Need feat. Foxy Brown (Trackmasters Remix)
B3 I Want To Be With U feat. Lauryn Hill
B4 Christmas In The City feat. Angie Martinez

Listen: I Love You feat. Smif-N-Wessun


Listen: I Want To Be With U feat. Lauryn Hill

Mary J. Blige: 8 Unreleased Bullets (Bootleg Vinyl Comp) (N/A)

This is the second record in my bootleg Mary J. 12" series and features a selection of rare features, mixes and tracks from throughout Blige's career during the 90s. There is no date of release though I believe possibly 2001, hence the disc number 'Mary2001'. Three of the tracks are mislabeled; the Supa Cat collaboration Dolly My Love is actually Dolly My Baby, 7 Days (Darkchild Remix) is basically the same remix version by Malik Pendleton off the single and has absolutely nothing to do with Jerkins and Paradise is Would You, a cast-off D'Angelo feature from the Share My World sessions that sounds as if it was possibly lifted off of the white label 12" that I also own from 1997. The Jerkins-produced Can't Get You Off My Mind features here in its remix form, which was previously only ever available as a

Mary J. Blige: Untitled (White Label Vinyl LP) (1997)

This vinyl LP is a white label release from 1997 and contains alternate takes and unreleased songs from Mary's "Share My World" album. Due to it being a bootleg and the songs being possibly unmastered versions, the sound quality isn't very good. It comes in a generic stickered white sleeve and being a white label release, doesn't have any track-listing or text on the vinyl itself, just handwritten letters denoting the A and B side. Some of the tracks are mislabelled; for instance, Share My Love is really Share My World and You Are My Everything is actually Everything. A lot of the tracks sound slightly different from the originals on the album, particularly I Can Love You (which does not feature Lil' Kim) and Love Is All We Need (which features a different rap verse to the released version.) Most appealing of all about this set, is

Mary J. Blige: Love Is All We Need (Midnite Mix) (Promo CDS) (MCA, 1997)

Love Is All We Need was the lead single off Blige's third album Share My World and was produced by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis in 1996. The most well-known and popular remix of the song is the one done by the Trackmasters, which features different production and lyrical content to the original. To my knowledge, this exclusive alternate 'quiet storm' version was only ever available on this promotional CD and one other 5-track acetate. I believe that the remix was done by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis though I am not exactly sure. Though it says it features Nas, it features only his background talk and no rap.

1. Love Is All We Need Midnite Mix featuring Nas
2. Love Is All We Need LP Version - (slightly longer than the version on the album)

Listen: Love Is All We Need Midnite Mix featuring Nas

Mary J. Blige: Let No Man Put Asunder/Deep Inside/As (Promo CDM) (MCA, 1999)


This CD was issued on a promotional basis only in 1999 and features rare mixes of Let No Man Put Asunder, Deep Inside and As by Maurice Joshua, Hex Hector and others.  Aside from Hex's mix of Deep Inside and Maurice Joshua's 200 Proof mix of Let No Man Asunder, none of these mixes were ever issued on CD format or on a commercial basis in the UK, US or anywhere else. You can buy the double 12" set for about the price of a 6 pack of beer but the CD is one of those things that you'll only come across once in a blue moon (and promotional CD maxis like this are definitely a thing of the past!) Let No Man Put Asunder was only ever issued as a B-side track and the George Michael duet As was an international release only. The mixes are mostly of the dance/club genre, with the exception of Kiyamma Griffin's "Quan Funk" Mix of Let No Man Put Asunder and DJ Spinna's "Beyond Real" mix of As. Both are more of the R&B genre, and the "Quan Funk" mix  especially features a new slower vocal arrangement. Other notable mixes include track 1, which features a guest vocal by Rochelle Fleming (formally of the R&B girl group First Choice) and  track 5, which was mixed by Roy Davis Jr. 

1. Let No Man Put Asunder (Shelter Mix featuring Rochelle Fleming) Remixed by Timmy Regisford
2. Let No Man Put Asunder (200 Proof Mix) Remixed by Maurice Joshua
3. Let No Man Put Asunder (Quan Funk Mix) Remixed by Kiyamma Griffin
4. Deep Inside (Hex Hector Mix) Remixed by Hex Hector
5. Deep Inside (Roy's Love 4 Mary J Mix) Remixed by Roy Davis Jr.
6. Deep Inside (Shelter Mix) Remixed by Timmy Regisford
7. As (Maurice's Millennium Mix) Remixed by Maurice Joshua
8. As (Jonathan Peters Mix) Remixed by Jonathan Peters
9. As (Beyond Real Mix) Remixed by DJ Spinna

Listen: Let No Man Put Asunder (Quan Funk Mix)

Listen: Deep Inside (Roy's Love 4 Mary J Mix)

Mary J. Blige: Deep Inside (Remix) featuring Mobb Deep (Promo CDM) (MCA, 1999)

"Deep Inside" was Blige's second single to be lifted from her eponymous fourth album and featured replayed elements of Elton John's "Bennie And The Jets." The remix version features Mobb Deep and uses re-recorded vocals and alternate, darker production. I am unsure as to what the sample is (if there is one.) It does still state that it features replayed elements from "Bennie And The Jets", although it doesn't really sound reminiscent of it to me.

1. Remix No Rap
2. Clean Remix
3. Instrumental
4. Acappella

Listen: Clean Remix

Mary J. Blige: Everything (Remixes) (CDM) (MCA, 1997)




This CD features remixes of Blige's 1997 single "Everything" by Rodney Jerkins, Jermaine Dupri and Malik Pendleton (producer of "Seven Days" and "Let No Man Put Asunder".) that were previously only available on promo 12".  Three of the mixes use different production and re-sung vocals, notably Malik's "Quiet Mix" and Jermaine's "So So Def Remix", which samples "Hip-Hug-Her" by Booker T & The MG's. Quite unusually for Jerkins, his remix "I Don't Know What It Is But It Sure Is Funky" (named after the sample it uses by 70s funk band Ripple) is the is the only remix out of the four that uses the original vocal-take.

1. So So Def Remix
2. Malik's Mix
3. The Quiet Mix
4. I Don't Know What It Is But It Sure Is Funky

Listen: Malik's Mix
Listen: The Quiet Mix


 Many thanks to Daniel for this contribution to my collection.

Faith Evans: 8 Unreleased Missiles (Bootleg EU Vinyl Comp) (N/A)

Now the First Lady gets a bootleg. As with the Mary J vinyls, this 12" features 8 'unreleased' songs, mainly features with other artists and two soundtrack cuts, the Kevin She'kspere' Briggs-produced "Best Man" (from the movie of the same name) and "I Just Can't" (from the High School High soundtrack.) Two of the more rarer songs are"Is It Real" (from the 1998 album NFL Jams 2 and featuring former Cincinnati Bengals player Jeff Blake) and a collaboration with  the Lost Boyz from 2000 "Got To Be Real 2000" (actually "Keep It Real" by DJ Hurricane featuring Faith Evans and the Lost Boyz, believe it or not available on iTunes.) Other than perhaps these, none of these tracks on this 12" are particularly rare, just hidden and/or forgotten. Though there is no date of release on this comp, I'm guessing it's from around 2000 judging by most of the dates from the material featured.

A1 Best Man*
A2 I Just Can't**
A3 Love Is Blind (Remix ft. Eve)***
A4 On My Mind (ft Color Me Bad)
B1 Got To Be Real 2000 (ft Lost Boyz)
B2 Georgy Porgy (ft Eric Benet)
B3 Is It Real (ft Jeff Blake)
B4 How's It Goin' Down (ft DMX)

*Produced by Kevin She'kspere Briggs
**Produced by Sean 'Diddy' Combs & Stevie J.
***Produced by Swizz Beatz


Listen: Is It Real feat. Jeff Blake

Faith Evans: You Gets No Love (CDM) (Bad Boy Entertainment, 2001)


This was the second single from Evans' third album Faithfully, and featured Sean "Diddy" Combs and rapper Loon. Combs also produced a remix to the song that sampled the Eurythmics' Sweet Dreams (Are Made Of This), which featured re-sung vocals from Evans and rap verse from Bad Boy affiliated rapper G-Dep. There's also an additional rap section by Evans with explicit language. The language is censored on  track 1, but on the extended "Club" version without G-Dep (track 5), it is not.

1. Remix Featuring G-Dep
2. Radio Mix Featuring P. Diddy & Loon
3. Remix Instrumental
4. Radio Mix Instrumental
5. Extended Club Mix - No Rap

Listen: Remix Featuring G-Dep

Faith Evans: Love Like This (CDM) (Bad Boy Entertainment, 1998)

 

Love Like This was the lead single to Evans' sophomore album Keep The Faith and was again co-produced by Sean "Diddy" Combs. Combs also produced a remix for the song (Never Knew Love Like This), which used a different sample. It features the same vocals, but includes a rap by Bad Boy affiliated rapper Black Rob. On this CD, there's both versions of the song (remix and LP) and their instrumentals.

1. Never Knew Love Like This (Remix) feat. Black Rob
2. Love Like This (Album Version)
3. Never Knew Love Like This (Remix) (Instrumental)
4. Love Like This (Instrumental)

Listen: Never Knew Love Like This (Remix) feat. Black Rob




Faith Evans: Lately I (Promo CDM) (Bad Boy Entertainment, 1999)

 

Lately I was to be the final single from Keep The Faith, but was only ever issued promotionally in 1999. There are two versions on this promo, the original album version and a slower mix by Sean "Diddy" Combs (PD Version) with alternate production and re-sung vocals. Combs' version is definitely a marked improvement on the drab original, which was a joint effort between Bad Boy lead producer Stevie J. and David Foster. There's also the PD Version (Instrumental), which has a longer intro.

1. PD Version
2. Album Version
3. PD Version (Instrumental)
4. Call Out Research Hook#1
5. Call Out Research Hook#2

Listen: PD Version

Faith Evans: Ain't Nobody (Who Could Love Me) (CDM) (Bad Boy Entertainment, 1996)


This was Evans' third single from her debut album Faith and was again produced by Sean Combs and Chucky Thompson. A remix of the single featured re-sung lyrics, a rap from Queen Latifah and a sample of Chaka Khan's 1982 hit Ain't Nobody. On this CD, there's the album and remix versions (plus instrumentals of both), and Kissing You from the Waiting To Exhale soundtrack.

The remix version on this CD contains explicit lyrics. 

1. Ain't Nobody (Who Could Love Me) (Album Version)
2. Ain't Nobody (Who Could Love Me) (Puffy & Chucky Remix) (Club Version) (Feat. Queen Latifah)
3. Kissing You (Album Version)
4. Ain't Nobody (Who Could Love Me) (Puffy & Chucky Remix) (Instrumental)
5. Ain't Nobody (Who Could Love Me) (Album Instrumental)

Listen: Ain't Nobody (Who Could Love Me) (Puffy & Chucky Remix) (Club Version) (Feat. Queen Latifah) 

Faith Evans: You Used To Love Me (Promo CDM) (Bad Boy Entertainment, 1995)


This was Evans' debut single and was produced by Sean "Diddy" Combs and Chucky Thompson for her first album Faith. Remixes by Combs and Ali Shaheed Muhammad were promotional only in the US, and featured re-sung vocals and alternative production. There were two mixes produced by Combs, the main "Puff Daddy Mix," and a "Guitar Mix", which was basically musically identical to his original mix but with a guitar sample.

1. Puff Daddy Mix
2. Puff Daddy Guitar Mix
3. Ali Mix
4. Puff Daddy Instrumental

Listen: Puff Daddy Mix

Listen: Ali Mix

Friday, March 15, 2013

Monifah: Touch It (R&B Remixes) (Promo CDM) (Universal, 1998)

"Touch It" was the lead single from Monifah's sophomore album "Mo'hogany" and was originally produced by Jack Knight and Screwface. It is her biggest hit to date, reaching a peak position of 9 on the Billboard charts in 1998. Many of the remixes were issued to import singles only, notably the grindin' remix by veteran hip hop producer Clark Kent (included on this CD), which features a slightly different vocal arrangement to the original. The Tony Dofat remix, on the other hand, was only ever issued promotionally and is scarce to come by, even on 12" vinyl. Dofat is best known for being a record producer for Sean 'Diddy' Combs' Bad Boy Entertainment label and was involved in the production of some of Mary J. Blige's early hip hop remixes. This remix in particular features completely different lyrics and production and is like an entirely different song altogether.

1. Clark Kent Mix*
2. Clark Kent Mix (No Rap)
3. Clark Kent Instrumental
4. Dofat Mix
5. Dofat Mix (No Rap)
6. Dofat Instrumental

Listen: Clark Kent Mix


Listen: Dofat Mix



*featuring uncredited rap by Sonja Blade

Thursday, March 14, 2013

Monifah: I Can Tell (Remix) (Promo CDM) (Universal, 2000)

I Can Tell was the first single to be taken from Monifah's third album Home in 2000. The original album version was produced by Rob Fusari and was an uptempo ballad, but its remix (produced by Teddy Riley and featuring a rap by Murphey Lee of the St. Lunatics) featured alternative production and lyrical content and sounded completely different. This promo CD features four different clean edits, including extended and rapless versions.

1. Radio Edit (Clean) w/ Rap
2. Radio Edit (Clean) w/o Rap
3. Extended Version (Clean)
4. Instrumental
5. Call Out Hook

Listen: Radio Edit (Clean) w/ Rap