Regular readers of this blog will have noticed that recently, I’ve been writing various articles on Salsoul Records. This has included Mixed With Love-The Walter Gibbons Anthology, Larry Levan-The Definitive Salsoul Mixes 1978-1983  and John Morales-The M&M Mixes which features previously unreleased Salsoul remixes. Many people will be wondering why I’ve decided to focus on Sasoul? Obviously, regular readers will know that along with Philadelphia International Records, Salsoul is one of my favorite labels. However, I’m not writing about Salsoul because it’s one of my favorite labels. Not at all. The reason is that recently, Christmas has come early for lovers of Salsoul. Two labels have announced they’d be rereleasing Salsoul’s back-catalogue. In the UK, BBR Records will be releasing albums by The Salsoul Orchestra, First Choice, Instant Funk and Double Exposure. This should give Salsoul fans something to look forward to. As if that’s not enough, in the US, Ultra Records will be undertaking a digital rerelease of Salsoul’s back-catalogue. So, for fans of Salsoul who can’t wait until then, I’ve decided to write several articles about some of the best Salsoul compilations I’ve come across. Having bought most of the ones released, I’ve separated the good, the bad and ugly, to save you having to do so. Recently, I’ve written about two of the best DJs and remixers ever in Walter Gibbons and John Morales, plus Larry Levan another talented and high-profile DJ and remixer. The next DJ whose Salsoul compilation I’ve chosen to review is Danny Krivit’s My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit which I’ll now tell you about. 

Released in 2003 on Suss’d Records, My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit features fourteen tracks. Among the tracks are tracks from Double Exposure, The Salsoul Orchestra, First Choice, Instant Funk, Inner Life, Candido and the unisputed Queen of Salsoul Loleatta Holloway. These tracks are a mixture of remixes, twelve inch singles and in the case of First Choice’s Let No Man Put Asunder, a medley of remixes by Frankie Knuckles, Walter Gibbons and Sheb Pettibone, which are then edited by Danny. Edits are something which have played an important role in Danny Krivit’s career. Danny Krivit is famous for his innovative, inventive and imaginative reedits. For any young person thinking of trying to forge a career as a DJ and producer, Danny Krivit should be a role model. owever, for anyone wanting to learn to make an edit, here’s how Danny Krivit started his career,

It was thirty years ago in 1982, Danny Krivit first reedited tracks. This was long before the software packages that are used nowadays. Instead, he’d have to rely on cutting up reel-to-reel tape and patiently, splicing it back together. This was time consuming, laborious work. Like many DJs of that time, these reedits were for using during their sets, not designed for being released commercially. Eventually, Danny was approached by a record company who wanted to release some of these reedits. When these were released on TD Records, Danny decided to use the pseudonym Mr K for the release of the reedits. Two of the tracks were The Chi-Lites’ My First Mistake and the Philly Soul classic from the Philadelphia All Stars’ Let’s Clean Up the Ghetto. Little did Danny know prior to their release, that very soon, these reedits would attain legendary status. However, reedits would play a big part in Danny’s DJ career.

After this, Danny found himself DJ-ing at New York’s Roxy indoor roller skating arena and it was there that Danny decided to try mash-ups. Here, he’d reedit a track and combine two tracks that worked well. This would later influence hip hop DJs and went down well at venues like the legendary Paradise Garage and Roxy. Like his earlier reedits, Danny chose to reedit and mash-up hidden gems and forgotten classics, exposing them to a new, appreciative and much wider audience. Since then, Danny has gone on to reedit numerous tracks, during his long and successful career as a DJ. For anyone wanting to hear some of Danny’s legendary and best edits, then I can recommend two compilations on Strut Records Danny Krivit’s Edits By Mr K and Edits By Mr K-Volume 2: Music of the Earth. Both compilations feature a master craftsman at work, Danny Krivit. 

Now Danny Krivit as most people know is also one of the best DJs in the world today and on My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit, Danny’s mixing is flawless and peerless. Again, for a young DJ listen and learn. If you use Danny as a role model and can become even half as good as him, then you’ll have a successful career. Another thing Danny Krivit is blessed with is impeccable taste in music. On My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit he picks fourteen Salsoul classics, of which I’ll now pick the creme de la creme.

Opening My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit, Danny throughs a curveball straight off. The track that opens his mix is Joe Claussell’s Acapella Remix of Everyman. This was a track from their 1976 album Ten Per Cent, arranged and produced by Norman Harris of the Baker, Harris, Young rhythm section. Just as you start to revel in the powerful, impassioned vocal accompanied by tight, soulful harmonies and percussion, the track’s over. Danny teases you with one minute of the track, before the mix explodes into life.

The explosion is caused by The Salsoul Orchestra’s track twelve inch mix of Getaway. This is a track from their 1977 album Magic Journey, arranged by vibes virtuoso Vince Montana. The track literally bursts into life, with blazing horns, rhythm section, sizzling guitars and a proliferation of percussion. Here, The Salsoul Orchestra are at their very best, fusing funk, soul, jazz, Latin and disco seamlessly. Blazing horns and lush swirling, sweeping strings courtesy of Don Renaldo help power the track along. Earl Young’s drumming is powerful, providing the track’s heartbeat, while Bobby Eli, and T.J. Tindall unleash sizzling, rock-tinged guitar solos. From the opening bars to the closing notes, you’re spellbound, as The Salsoul Orchestra fuses genres seamlessly and peerlessly, and in the process provide a track that’s a dance-floor filler and classic.

Two tracks after the Saloul Orchestra explode into life Danny teases the listener again. He throws in a stonewall classic Instant Funk’s I Got My Mind Made Up. This was a track from their 1979 album Instant Funk. It was Instant Funk’s second album of 1979, and was produced by Bunny Sigler. Sadly, the You Can Get It Girl) (Beat) is only a tantalizing thirty-seconds long. Having said that, it whets your appetite nicely, resulting in you digging out the original, and reveling in seven minutes of Salsoul bliss.

Later in the mix comes another Salsoul classic, one of the creme de la creme. Inner Life’s Moment of My Life was released on Salsoul Records in 1982. The version Danny Krivit introduces is his edit of Shep Pettibone Remix. This was a track from Inner Life’s third and final album for Salsoul Inner Life II. Arranged by Leroy Burgess, who co-produced the track with Greg Carmichael, it features a stunning, diva-esque vocal, full emotion and passion, delivered with power. This is delivered against a backdrop of crunchy drumbeats, percussion, keyboards and the funkiest of bass line, while gospel tinged backing vocalists augment the lead vocal. The tempo is 114 beats per minute and like so many of the Salsoul releases, is just a quality slice of disco, with elements of funk and soul featuring in Leroy’s fantastic arrangement.

Having referred to Inner Life’s Moment of My Life  as a classic, Danny trumps this with a track from the undisputed Queen of Salsoul Loleatta Holloway, where she was transformed from Southern Soul singer to disco diva. One of her greatest tracks in Dreamin,’ a stonewall disco classic. Here she demonstrates just what it took to be a true disco diva. Dreamin’ was a track from Loleatta, her third album, released in 1976, on Salsoul. The song was released in March 1976, and produced by Baker, Harris, Young. Danny chooses a mix where the original track is mixed an acapella version during the second half of the track. In its original form, this track would become a true disco classic. Loleatta delivers a sassy vocal, before vamping her way through the track. With the Salsoul Orchestra accompanying her, everything is in place for a seminal track. Sweeping, swirling strings, Earl Young’s peerless drumming, percussion, Ron Harris’ bass and then Norman Baker’s guitar give way to Loleatta’s impassioned, sassy vocal. From there, Loleatta gives a masterclass of a vocal, accompanied by soulful backing vocalists. Add to that Vince Montana Jr.’s vibes playing and blazing horns that punctuate the track adding drama, and you’ve the recipe for one of the greatest disco tracks of the seventies.

First Choice released their debut album Armed and Extremely Dangerous on Philly Grove Records in 1973. By 1977, they were signed to Norman Harris’ Gold Mind Records and released their fourth album Delusions. It featured two of their classic tracks, Dr. Love and this track Let No Man Put Asunder, both produced by Baker, Harris, Young. Rochelle Fleming’s lead vocal is a sassy vamp, from a true disco diva. The interplay between Rochelle’s and her backing vocalists helps build up the drama and emotion of the track. This she does against a backdrop where the rhythm section, percussion and keyboards combine. For eight minutes Rochelle teases and tantalises with her peerless, sassy vocal as Danny’s edited medlry takes in mixes by three great remixers Frankie Knuckles, Walter Gibbons, & Shep Pettibone Remix’s. So good is Danny’s medley, it’s nearly worth buying the album just to hear it.

The Salsoul Orchestra feature three times on My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit. 212 North 12th was a track from their 1979 album Street Sense, mixed by Tom Moulton. A powerful, dramatic, diva-esque vocal, drenched in delay opens the track. It’s accompanied by blazing horns, pounding rhythm section, guitars percussion and stabs of keyboards. Backing vocalists and swathes of the lushest strings are added, as the Salsoul Orchestra combine their unmistakable combination of soul, funk and disco. They sprinkle hooks aplenty, while Earl Young and the rest of his rhythm section provide a pounding, dance-floor friendly track, mixed by the Godfather and inventor of the remix and twelve inch single. With personnel like this involved in making the track, it’s no wonder it’s a genuine Salsoul classic.

My final choice from My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit is Ripple’s The Beat Goes On, with Danny choosing the Jim Burgess 12″ Mix. The track is from Ripple’s only Salsoul album Son of the Gods and produced by Floyd Smith. A combination of Latin percussion, pounding rhythm section, melodic keyboards and the lushest of strings combine brilliantly. Then things get even better when a soaring, emotive female vocal enters. She’s accompanied by backing vocalists, while swathes of strings, percussion and the tight, pounding rhythm section combine with braying horns. It’s a glorious sound, with an uplifting, feel-good sound where Ripple provide you with “sweet music” as The Beat Goes On. So good is the track, that it’s one of the highlights of My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit. 

My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit proves that Danny Krivit is a world-class DJ, capable of producing some innovative and imaginative edits of tracks. A case in point is reedit of First Choice’s Let No Man Put Asunder, a medley of remixes by Frankie Knuckles, Walter Gibbons and Sheb Pettibone, which Danny transforms seamlessly into a medley. So good is that one track, it’s almost worth buying My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit to hear it. However, there’s much more to My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit than one track. During the compilation, Danny’s mixing is flawless, totally peerless. To me, he’s one of the major league DJs, up there with John Morales et al. Not only that, but Danny Krivit’s one of the best re-editors and remixers. For any young DJ, Danny is a DJ to use as a role model. He’s paid his dues over the years, learning the art of DJ-ing, plus taught himself to edit and remix tracks. When he learnt to edit a track, it was strictly old-school, cutting up reel-to-reel tape and patiently, splicing it back together. Now Danny’s progressed to the major league, remixing tracks for some of the biggest artists in music and playing at the world’s biggest nightclubs. Danny’s also embraced technology, adding VJ-ing to his CV. Unlike other DJs who cling to memories and refuse to embrace technology, Danny Krivit has embraced and mastered technology, using it as another string to his bow. For anyone whose not heard Danny Krivit live, then My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit is the next best thing. Then to hear his editing skills, stop by your local record shop and pick up Edits By Mr K and Edits By Mr K-Volume 2: Music of the Earth. Both compilations feature a true master at work. Obviously, there are many other Danny Krivit compilations out there, but stick to Edits By Mr K, Edits By Mr K-Volume 2: Music of the Earth and My Salsoul Selected and Mixed By Danny Krivit and you’ll realize why Danny Krivit has enjoyed such longevity and become one of the true giants of DJ-ing, editing and remixing. Standout Tracks: The Salsoul Orchestra Getaway, Inner Life Moment of My Life, First Choice Let No Man Put Asunder and Loleatta Hollway Dreamin.’


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