Having spent the afternoon playing the very first copy of DJ Hero in the country, realising that it’s not nearly as easy as it looks and giving myself one of those lame RSI injuries in my ‘scratching’ hand that’s usually inly achieved by frenetic masturbating, I came to a startling conclusion. DJs are people, too. It’s often easy to forget this, especially when you walk into some $100,000 alcohol event and they’re still playing Bob Sinclair joints that weren’t good in the first place. Luckily, I have Calvin Harris on Twitter. Not only has the man produced probably the best record of the year (Yeah, shoot me now all you Flaming Lips fans), but he’s probably the funniest guy on Earth. The man uses the social networking platform like most teenage girls use a psychologist, read: way too often. He tells us about how much he loves smoky bacon crisps. He goes apeshit at the BPA when they censor songs that he owns the copyright too. He rips into Pop Idol in the UK. And somehow through all of it he manages to come up with hit after hit, not only for himself, but for other artists, too.
Everyone knows that Harris was the one who turned Dizzee Rascal from underground grime boy into mainstream hero with ‘Dance Wiv Me’, but the man doesn’t even have to write originals to get the party started. His remix portfolio is legendary, not only for it’s sheer scope but also the strike rate; everything Calvin touches becomes a club hit. Well, except Kylie Minogue, but god knows he tried. I’m getting so worked up about this because every man and his dog can make a remix, but it takes seriously talent to rip the guts out of a track, start fresh with only the vocals and turn into something that eclipses the original. Calvin is king in this respect, especially when he turns songs I previously couldn’t stand into ones I can’t get enough of. Speaking of which…
Katy Perry, she’s hot, right? Not only is the born-again-un-Christian now shagging Russel Brandt, but she’s also enjoying quite a healthy musical career, what with being a lesbian, or not being a lesbian, or whatever. Recently, Perry had her umpteenth hit in our fair country with ‘Waking Up In Vegas’. Don’t get me wrong, it’s a nice song. But after a while, it is so painfully irritating I just want to shoot someone. I would change the station whenever I heard those slot machines ringing. Then I heard Calvin Harris’ take on the track, and now I’m totally addicted. Probably because it sounds more like him than her, but nonetheless, it is brilliance. Now I can appreciate Katy for what she is all over again. A girl who loves flamingos and fruit with a great set of assets.
Katy Perry – Waking Up In Vegas (Calvin Harris Remix)
Another track that became perennially annoying, especially for clubbers in Sydney, was Cut Copy’s ‘Hearts On Fire’, released way before their much better and more tolerable album, In Ghost Colours. That sax line would follow you everywhere you went, until Harris decided he didn’t like it and went for something totally different. Once more, I can listen to Cutters without wanting to cut myself. That was a cheap shot, but if it was NZ punk band Cut Off Your Hands they’d be getting the same treatment, alright?
Cut Copy – Hearts On Fire (Calvin Harris Remix)
Finally, we have his treatment of Jamiroquai’s ‘Canned Heat’. I really don’t think there was any chance in hell this was ever going to suck. And it doesn’t. Thus, by the process of elimination, I have deduced that Calvin Harris can make anyone sound good. That includes Lady Sovereign, Short Stack, Kevin Rudd and most of Hamas. We love you Mr Harris.
Jamiroquai – Canned Heat (Calvin Harris Remix)