Music » Livewire

Andy Smith

With Scott Hendy and Mike Filly. Thursday, May 24, at the Funky Buddha


DJ Andy Smith (of Portishead fame) has a style that's a far cry from the melancholy trip-hop he creates when performing with a band. A Bristol beathound since his teens, Smith met up with Portishead co-founder Geoff Barrow while spinning hip-hop tracks at a local club, and it wasn't long before the two were scrambling through Smith's record crates, looking for samples. Smith would warm up for Portishead by playing sets that indulged in funk, jazz, and '70s soundtracks, and were intended to educate patrons about the band's influences. His 1998 DJ mix, The Document, sounds like one of his warm-up gigs. It's a hodgepodge of hip-hop and classic funk, highlighting tracks by artists such as the Jungle Brothers, Jeru the Damaja, Tom Jones, and Grandmaster Flash -- all of whom have been sampled to death. But Smith gives them their due by spinning the originals. His style of mixing musical genres within sets -- expect to hear the Beatles juxtaposed with Gangstarr at his show -- is a rarity in the regimented world of DJs. Smith's sets, described as hip-hop, funk, and northern soul, last up to four hours and are probably the most eclectic you'll hear in the business -- so be prepared for a late night.

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