Written by Cady Colosimo
We all have that one friend that DJs, and whether or not they have any “skill” is questionable, but DJ Omatic is not that DJ. He’s been at it for more 15 years and his original beats bang. Involved in the hip-hop community since college at the University of Iowa in the 2000’s, he’s made tracks for many of the state’s top MCs. Lately Omatic has been infatuated with underground soul music, making this list perfect to boogie to.
You can find DJ Omatic on the one’s and two’s every first Friday of the month at the Des Moines Social Club’s Basement Bar for Preferred Blend: A Modern Disco Party. This month’s installment is coming at you this Friday, November 6 at 10 p.m., and as is customary, there’s no cover charge to dance the night away.
Booker T & The MGs "Melting Pot"
"I started DJing a little over 15 years ago and got into it because of hip-hop. Although my first love was rap music, I DJed for my break dancer friends quite a bit from my beginnings as a DJ in the early 2000s when I was in college. DJing for break dancers forced me to learn a lot of new music from a lot of different genres, especially a lot of old funk. This track is an absolute classic funk jam and b-boy anthem."
A Number of Names "Share Vari"
"This is considered to be the first techno song, released in 1981. I first stumbled upon this video and song when Peanut Butter Wolf, the co-founder of Stones Throw records, posted it on twitter about five years ago. Music, and electronic music, has changed so much since this was released, but this still bangs."
D Train "You're the One for Me"
"Don't hate on the keytar! The synth line on this is so great. This was released in 1981 and is quintessential boogie music. Boogie music is making a nice resurgence, thanks to artists like Dam-Funk. I first heard this track when one of my favorite DJs, Eli Escobar, posted it on his blog around 2008. This song also still bangs."
Liquid Liquid "Cavern"
"Breaks and baselines. This also came out in 1981 and is most famous for being sampled by Grandmaster Flash and the Furious Five on 'White Lines.' 'Cavern' is definitely a classic on its own, and is just a fun and weird song. And so funky."
Womack & Womack "Teardrops"
"This song was a hit in the late 80’s and still gets radio play on 80's stations, but I didn't notice it until I heard it on a DJ Moma mixtape a few years ago. That mixtape had a bunch of great '80s R&B dance tracks, but this was the standout for me. Linda Womack's voice and that groove: perfection."
Holy Ghost! "I Know, I Hear (ft. Caroline Polachek of Chairlift)"
"Now for some newer stuff: This song was released in 2011. Holy Ghost! can pretty much do no wrong. Their first single in 2007, 'Hold On,' was a nice underground synth pop dance hit, and their debut album released in 2011 was front-to-back bangers. This track, 'I Know, I Hear,' was a one-off single released after their debut album. This might be my favorite original song of theirs. The drums are crisp and the synth sounds so nice. Holy Ghost! has also done a bunch of remixes, which I can't recommend enough. I would happily DJ a night of nothing but Holy Ghost! tracks and remixes, but I'd feel like I was cheating."
Tiger & Woods "Gin Nation"
"This song is a stand out on this producer/DJ duo's debut album from 2011. All of their songs basically stick to the same formula; loop old, obscure funk and disco samples and turn them into dance floor gold. I also recommend everything Tiger & Woods puts out."
Ron Basejam "For the People (Ashley Beedle x Yam Who - Wendy House Remix)"
"This track just came out a couple months ago and had me hooked immediately. I wasn't familiar with the original, nor the artists who remixed it, I just found it on Soundcloud because of a recommendation. The original song came out about 10 years ago, but the "for the people" sample sounds like it's from the '70s (if anyone knows where that vocal sample is from, please let me know!). This track just builds and builds so beautifully. Soulful dance music at it's finest. 'For the people, by the people.'"