Meet Southerngold, the Santigold/Southern Rap Mixtape Downtown Records Doesn’t Want You to Hear


Two parallel but related developments emerging from the existence of Southerngold, the ace Santigold/southern rap mash-up mixtape created by Brooklyn’s Terry Urban. The first is a scandal: on the eve of Southerngold‘s “release”–i.e., Monday night, when Urban was sitting at his desk in Brooklyn on the verge of “uploading the mix to”–a cease and desist order came over the transom from Downtown Records, Santigold’s label. The same Downtown Records that’s home to Gnarls Barkley–featuring the dude who made the most famous illegal outlaw mix ever, The Grey Album–and a bunch of others (Spankrock, Justice, etc.) who might plausibly be described as forward thinking when it comes to sample clearances. Oh, right, and Santigold herself, who as Urban points out in a heartbroken blog post, ain’t exactly a paragon of originality either:

    Is Downtown Records not aware of the influence deejay culture has made on Santi’s career? All the deejays who have made homemade remixes and re-edits that have gotten play in clubs across the world? It’s not like commercial radio was embracing her music when she dropped. It was the progressive deejay, the same deejays who make remixes and mashups and support avant-garde creative music!…

And if you know Santi personally… can you ask her for me? Why is she shutting down the very deejays who will support her to the very end? Her first single was called “Creator” yet they shut down the very people who create?

Urban then continues in the song-title/literal-meaning-of-the-song-title vein for a little while longer, tacking on a P.S.: “My friends… a parable for you on this evening: If Santigold truly wants Brooklyn To Go Hard, and I’m a Brooklyn resident trying to Go Hard… and she shuts it down, is Brooklyn, by default, not going hard?” Indeed.

Scandal (and cease and desist aside), Southerngold is in fact very much on the internet, and the mix turns out to be really pretty unfuckwithable. Urban’s taste in southern rap is tame but solid: Lil Wayne’s “Fireman” (going hard over a streamlined “My Superman”), Purple Ribbon All-Stars’s “Kryptonite” (over a buffed-out “Creator”), Mike Jones’s “Still Tippin'” (gone reggae over “Shove It”), Jeezy’s “Go Crazy” (sounding pretty avant-garde over “You’ll Find a Way”), etc. Most it knocks, and Santigold’s lite-beer summer jams turn out to be great counterpoint to gravelly-voiced and screwed southern vocals. Best–from a pure comedy perspective–is Urban’s “Hustlin'” flip, which turns perpetual straightman Rick Ross into a 350-pound cheerleader waving pompoms in delirious slow motion over “Lights Out.” Much better than a Bud Light remix.

Santigold Shuts Down My Mixtape? [The Press Play Show]
Terry Urban & Gold Coin Clothing – Southerngold (Mixtape) [Nah Right]