Let’s not waste time with the “You mean DJ Jazzy Jeff is still around?” rhetoric. He never left. Jeff has been keeping the art of turntablism long past the days of getting thrown out of Will’s house by Uncle Phil.
Most recently, Jeff teamed with two-time Grammy nominee Erro for an EP of soul remixes that plays pretty well, especially if you concentrate on the music. Yoruba Soul Mixes - Rock Wit U Feat. Erro consists of two songs and two remixes of those songs. It’s an interesting departure for Jeff and a chance for Erro to work with a master.
On the first track, “Rock Wit U (Yoruba Soul Mix) (Main),“ Erro shows a great voice. The problem becomes that the listening experience is almost immediately ruined with a repetition that redefines simplicity. What threatens to ruin a pretty decent collaboration fades, however, once the second track—the Dub version of the same song—kicks in. The vocals are reduced to snippets and samples, giving the song a much easier feel.
"For Da Love Of Da Game (DJ Jazzy Jeff Remix) (Main)" rights the course once and for all with a much smoother presentation by Erro. It also shows Jazz Jeff’s dexterity, as does the rest of the production. Jeff, for this project, veers away from the turntable gymnastics and much more in to the realm of soul. With an ease of flow that borrows from Dan the Automator, Jeff adds his own inner city flavor, resulting in an old-school soul feel that would come as a surprise to those who only know Jeff as the inventor of the “transform” scratch.
All in all, Yoruba Soul Mixes - Rock Wit U Feat. Erro is a short but sweet mixture of hip-hop and soul. Weather the repetition of the first track and the reward is a laidback, stylish re-introduction to the world of Jazzy Jeff and a look at an R&B up-and-comer in Erro.