Professional fraternity man by day and roving entertainment reporter by night, Buck Cooke moved to Atlanta in 2000. Armed with a passion for pop culture and rabid appetite for music, Buck scours the entertainment landscape for treasures in music, TV and cinema.
Here’s my weekly look at the hot tracks to keep your weekend beats flowing and the essentials you need to add to your playlist.
If you’re not heading out tonight to the Heretic for DJ Roland Belmares or the Eagle for its 22nd anniversary happenings, these dance tracks can provide the beats you need for a night on the town. Or try them out while you’re driving to Athens for Boybutante or Birmingham for Rites of Spring. (For a rundown on what’s happening tonight, check The Gay Agenda for today.)
“Love Sex Magic”
(Jason Nevins Sex Club Mix)
Ciara featuring Justin Timberlake
The regular version of this track would make the list on its own merits, but the dance remixes are just out of this world. Masterbeat has them as an exclusive, but they’re sure to pop up on iTunes or Perfect Beat sometime soon. Nevins plays with his sound on this one and tones down the trademark guitar-heavy sound for a more anthem-like vibe. It’s still a Nevins remix, mind you, but it has more of a club feel.
(Tracy Young Monster Club Rap Mix)
God bless rappers and hip-hop stars secure enough with themselves to go the dance remix route. Akon kicks some serious ass on the dance floor with this remix. (For those who aren’t that into rap, there is a version of the Young remix without the rap.)
(Luke Johnstone and Wayne G. Industry Edit)
Anthem alert – part one. There were so many excellent remixes for this track that Tommy Boy had to release two singles to include them all. This version brings the high drama and killer diva vocals so popular in the late 90s/early 00s that listening to this track almost makes you think you were at Backstreet.
“Bad, Bad Boy”
(Solar City Club Anthem)
The Perry Twins featuring Niki Haris
Anthem alert – part two. The Twins give Oceana a run for their money thanks to the diva-riffic vocals of Haris, a former long-time back-up singer/dancer for Madonna. Message to record labels: keep the anthems coming because in these bleak economic times, a wailing diva with killer pipes and big beats to fill the club lift our spirits almost as much as a raise or an economic stimulus package.
(Jason Nevins Club)
This version is definitely too hot for Radio Disney, which is where this fledgling pop group is well-known to the tween crowd. The remixes for this track take their bubble-gum pop and dirty it up considerably, but none more so than the Nevins mix.
“Love is the Look”
(Deepswing Runway Glide Mix)
This version of the gay dance diva’s latest in a long string of hit singles is more dreamlike than some of the other club mixes, but it showcases her powerful, clear vocals. We can hardly wait for the album “The Power of Music” to come out, but as long as Kristine keeps the singles coming, we can wait a little longer.
“Give Me Tonight”
(David Delano, Dirty Lou and Swedish Egil Mix)
This remix might be a little too house for some, but skip to the 2:45 mark and listen to the brilliance that follows. Who knew we were all dying for fresh remixes of this classic dance track? Hopefully more re-imagined goodies from Shannon are on the way.
“Theme for ‘Drag Race”
While “Cover Girl” is a great song, this is one of the best tracks from “Champion.” The dance break before “Start your engines/ May the best woman win” kicks ass and this track is screaming for a remix.
Oh, how a full-length version of this remix would rock. While this is just an edit, this remix is packed with killer beats and plenty of drama. The powerful bass thunders through you, so get ready for Tonal and Lachey to throw you around the dance floor a bit with this one.
(Jason Nevins Extended)
This mix is vintage Nevins: big vocals, tons of guitar, and plenty of rock vibes thrown into the synths. Roy’s growl is the perfect complement to Nevins’ style and while all of the remixes for this track are excellent, this one is the best of the bunch.
“A Little Too Not Over You”
Tonal makes another appearance and gives us another edit of his remix, which is great, but would rock as a full-length club cut. And who knew Archuleta would go the dance remix route? Maybe there’s hope for him yet. Now if only David Cook would get on the dance remix bandwagon.
(Zoned Out Club)
The younger Knowles keeps giving us reminders that Beyoncé’s talent must be in the genes. This mix turns up the drama on this track and should make Beyoncé nervous about her place on the charts. Solange just might upset her big sister with this one.
“Piece of Me”
(LA Riots Remix)
A good dance track with a male vocalist can be hard to find, but Cornell gives a solid turn on this mix of the lead single from his recent album, “Scream.” This version comes with plenty of vocal manipulation and aggressive instrumentation. Keep ‘em coming, Chris.
(Robots to Mars Mix)
Looks like Lady G’s on her way to a third No. One with this one. The suggestive lyrics might give her a problem with some, but you’ll never hear me complain about someone’s disco stick.