Sunday, December 8, 2013

The 10 Best Space Jam Mash-ups You Can Find On The Internet

   I take this job seriously. I really do. But sometimes, the Internet just plain wins. It takes something seemingly unimportant and insignificant and transforms it so that it simply demands my attention. As a result, fine pieces of journalism such as this are born.
   What I want you to understand, as a prelude to all that you are about to experience, is that this is no half-assed, thrown-together, copy-and-paste crap in list form. No. Rather, over two dozen prime candidates for this particular Top 10 were considered. The research was extensive. The analysis, with excellent contributions from Dylan “Roommate of the Year” Rogers, was critical and definitive. No expense was spared.
   Why Space Jam though? Well, as one of the most consistently-excellent and time-resilient phenomena of the 1990s childhood era, the movie deserves an article in its own right, but when you factor in the sheer strength of the cult following that continues to this day, it is clear that you have something special on your hands. If you ask me, the flick is nothing without that great theme song. It is catchy, memorable, and perfectly in line with the movie’s terrific cool-fun tone.
   No further introduction is needed. Sometimes, the Internet just does magical things, and the best that we can all do is sit back and listen. Ladies and gentlemen, the Top 10 Space Jam mash-ups that your browser can find.
   Just click the links and discover greatness.

   Our list starts out with a pure blend of the classics. That is right: the Space Jam theme blended with the Space Jam theme. Essentially, the artist just laid one version of the song over the other, but you cannot deny that the result does a fantastic job of a) still being really darn catchy, and b) maintaining the integrity of the original. There might not be a lot of points for creativity here, but things still sound great.

   The pounding bass of the Imagine Dragons tune blends surprisingly well with the more snare-centric Quad City groove, which adds great contrast. Credit to the artist for doing an actual mix of both songs rather than falling for the lazy tack-them-on-top-of-each-other trap. Bonus points are awarding for that great tagline: I feel the slam in my bones. It might be higher on this list if it was not for poor use of Radioactive’s terrific inhale effect in the first verse—you expect something great here, but it ends up muddled in the background. Lame.

   I will admit it, the opening is a tad weak, but the song quickly grows on you as you keep listening (this might be helped a little bit by the hilarious Photoshop-job of Chuck’s face on top of Carly Rae’s, but credit where credit is due). Things really hit their stride when Call Me Maybe contributes that infectious six-note string segment in the chorus—it meshes well with the verses in the Jam song. Would be a tad better if some Carly Rae vocals were added in to give some contrast, but at the very least you have something creative to be found here.

   At first, the slowdown is off-putting, but this is truly the best mixing we have seen on this list thusfar. The artist switches up the tempo, highlights certain bass notes during transitions, and blends the vocals of each song in excellent fashion. The Verve sounds great sped-up, and the long stretches of Bittersweet Symphony that highlight the crooning oohs and ahhs of lead singer Richard Ashcroft blend well with the raps of C.C. Lemonhead. Yes, that is one of the Quad City DJs, thanks for asking.

   Seems natural, right? Well, it is. Major props to this artist for the incredible blending of Daft Punk’s infectious four-word chorus with the lyrics of the Space Jam theme. So far, this is easily the most dance-ready mash-up we have seen. The verses give you a terrific straight beat, while the chorus provides for solid freeze-frame potential. Oh, and the breakdown at the 3:00 mark takes the whole thing to another level. We are entering the cream of the crop with this one.

   Did you hear that opening build?! Amazing! This is truly what this list is all about—an effective mash-up that uses real creativity. It would have been easy to just tack on the Funkytown keyboard riff onto the Space Jam theme, but no. This artist did a killer job of combining the classic verses of Space Jam with the Funkytown chorus. This is easily the most exciting song on this list so far, the problem is that it is just too darn short. Finish strong, YouTubers!

   It is time to stop messing around. Here is far and away the most inventive mash-up on this list. A classic Christmas tune meets a classic 90s flick—who would have thought? The best thing about this particular combination is that it takes an orchestra, meshes it with a hip-hop tune, and then creates something that is headbangingly good. A new genre out of two entirely different genres! It is surprising in the absolute best way. And the closing forty seconds are absolutely epic. The made Space Jam sound huge.

   Sometimes great artists hone their craft for years and years until they reach perfection, but sometimes you just catch lightning in a bottle. Ladies and gentlemen, here is a fine example of the latter. How the hell does this work so well?! I cannot even say for sure—maybe it has something to do with the crowd yelling “Bill! Bill! Bill! Bill!” in the background while the Space Jam crowd responds to C.C. Lemonhead’s shouts for the Na-na-nas. The mixing is especially strong in the second half of the song, but I am sure you know that already. Science rules.

   When I was playing this back for myself as I wrote this paragraph, I still cracked up. I have listened to it a solid eight times now, and it is still consistently hilarious. The combination is so unexpected, yet so brilliant, that there is no choice but to just sit and enjoy it. You wonder why Celine Dion never borrowed the Space Jam groove to begin with—it takes her pop-ballad and makes it clubby and beautiful and dance-worthy all at once. A major highlight of this one is also the build-up to the climactic final chorus around the 3:20 mark. Creativity level: expert. It has been an honor slamming with you.

   Give me a second, I am still applauding. What an amazing tune. This mash-up with one of the most well-known classic rock songs out there took a lot of guts and a lot of heart, but this artist totally had what it takes. The levels of each tune are perfectly balanced, we can hear all the Space Jam lyrics without drowning out the numerous face-melting guitar solos from Kansas. I also am a total sucker for the quick cut-outs with the “Don’t you cry no more!” wailings, but the best part is easily hearing the Space Jam crowd burst into applause as the piano kicks off the opening verse (around 1:00). Flat-out gives you chills, and whoever thought the Space Jam tune could do that?! This is the perfect blend of two wildly-different tunes, and it works to absolute perfection. This is why the Internet exists. What a way to go out.

   Slam on, friends. Slam on.


  1. Nah man you forgot one:

    this. this is one of the greatest Space Jam mash ups ever.

  2. You're missing one of my personal favorites, "Money for Slamming (fixed ending) - Quad City DJs VS Dire Straits" --

    1. If we're talking Dire Straits, how 'bout "Sultans of Slam?"

  3. i saw this one on reddit......congratulations you are making it big!!!!! big dazz! -yommah