Promo Snipptes M+M v3 (these are heavily edited versions)
“The original process of ‘re-mixing records’ was intended to provide an alternative listening experience which had been optimized for people who went out to dance at Discos. John was one of the early pioneers who loved music, understood his craft and HAD RESPECT FOR THE CREATIVE WORK from which his mixes were derived”
Patrick Adams – Super Producer. Writer of more than 30 Gold and Platinum records and back to back winner of ASCAP Songwriter of the year award 1996/1997
This compilation is John Morales’ third for BBE. Few can match his contributions to the world of Dance Music be it soul, funk, disco, to today’s house music.
John Morales is considered one of the true legends of the mix. And his work some thirty years later continues to be cutting edge and inspiring. His epic mix of Universal Robot Bands boogie anthem “Barely Breakin Even” is the source from which BBE Records got its name.
No attempt has ever been made to summarise the pinnacle of Johns work. This third release on BBE continues that history lesson that John has forged in dance music. He formed The M+M Mix with his late partner Sergio Munzibai, in 1982 till 1990 whose output of over 650 mixes will be unmatched today. John continues The M+M legacy.
From the Rolling Stones to Gloria Estefan, The Temptations, Barry White, Marvin Gaye, James Brown, Hall & Oates, Teena Marie, Aretha Franklin to BBE – we have all been molded by Johns everlasting mix influence, love for his work and his Music.. This superb triple CD presents some of John’s finest works, and takes the M+M Mix legacy to yet a higher level. CD1 & 2 feature some of the greatest tracks of all time from the Start of CD 1 and Barry White’s “Never, Never Gonna Give You Up” , to the classic rework of Marvin Gaye’s “I Want You” which closes out CD2, there are no sleepers here. CD3 also features some of the best from the vaults of the Salsoul and West End labels, anthems like Loleatta Holloway’s – “Hit & Run” to legendary Paradise Garage favorite Loose Joints “Is It All Over My Face?”.
This is the legacy of the M+M mixes.
If you grew up in the ‘80s and had even the smallest of passing interest in music, particularly club music, chances are you were very familiar, albeit unwittingly, with the work of John Morales. On the radio, in the record racks and most importantly on the dance floor John’s work (predominantly with studio partner Sergio Munzibai) helped define an era and influence future generations of DJs, producers and artists.
Born into a hard working Puerto Rican household in the Bronx, New York, at the start of the rock ‘n’ roll era, Morales, like many children of the period was fascinated by this new art-form that was saturating the airwaves and upsetting parents everywhere. So in love with the music he heard, as a 12-year old he persuaded his local record store to give him a part-time job with payment not in dollars, but in 45s. By the time he was old enough to get a full-time job his burgeoning record collection had helped land him one of his first DJ gigs at the influential Stardust Ballroom in the Bronx (his father had earlier owned a bar in Jersey City where John had first got the DJ bug). As his reputation grew Morales was invited downtown to Manhattan to play guest spots at the likes of Pippins, Bentleys, 1018, Limelight and the infamous Studio 54.
Like many DJs of the ‘70s John ventured into the studio more through need than necessity: “I started to make medleys and remixes because the records in those days were too short, most in the 3 minute range, and being a DJ I needed to get more out of the records I was spinning. I first started to do my edits using the pause button on a Teac Cassette Deck. After many hours of self education I graduated and I purchased a Sony _” reel-to-reel and learned to edit. It was hard work and long hours editing and putting all the little pieces of tape together and making something creative happen. Reflecting now, I realize how important it was to what I would later do. It taught me a lot about what I wanted to do and how to do it, so that by the time I got in a real studio I was virtually a whiz at editing tape much to the amazement of some of the engineers I worked with.”
His now infamous ‘Deadly Medleys’ and ‘Sunshine Acetate Medleys’ brought him to the attention of New York disco producers Greg Carmichael and Patrick Adams who were impressed by the hunger and desire of the self-taught engineer. “My first credited mix was Inner Life’s ‘Caught Up (In A One Night Love Affair)’, even though I had worked on a few other records before that, but I hadn’t been credited, for acts like the Universal Robot Band and Musique’s ‘In The Bush’.
A meeting at New York’s influential WBLS radio station, where Cuban-born Sergio Munzibai worked as musical director alongside Frankie Crocker would signal the next chapter in Morales’ career, and resulted in unquestionably the most prolific remix partnership of the 1980s and 90’s with over 650 mixes to their name. “We partnered in 1982, when we met at a New York studio called Blank Tapes where I had worked for many years with Bob Blank. Sergio and John’s first record together was Mikki’s ‘Itching For Love’. After that we united and did all our mixes together and the M&M moniker was born.”
Discovering an instant rapport and musical appreciation it translated well into the recording studio where the M&M stamp became synonymous with almost every major dance release of the era. In fact it wasn’t uncommon for the duo to remix upwards of 10 records in any given month. Alongside cult and groundbreaking records for the Fantastic Aleems (‘Get Down Friday Night’), Class Action (‘Weekend’), and of course Jocelyn Brown (‘Somebody Else’s Guy’) they refashioned certified pop smashes for DeBarge (‘Rhythm Of The Night’), Harold Faltermeyer (‘Alex F’), Shakatak (‘Down On The Street’), Miami Sound Machine (‘Dr Beat’), the Temptations (‘Treat Her Like A Lady’) and hundreds more in an eight year period that saw them almost an ever present on the Billboard Dance, R&B or Hot 100 pop charts. Tina Turner, the Rolling Stones, Spandau Ballet, Aretha Franklin, Shalamar, Hall & Oates, Dan Hartman, Candi Staton, Melba Moore, Rose Royce, Billy Ocean, Debbie Gibson, Odyssey, the Commodores and even Peter Schilling and Rod Stewart, in fact just about every major artist of the day was in some way retouched by the hands of Morales & Munzibai.
“We worked together till around 1988,” John recalls. His solo production projects in the ‘90s included such acts as Debbie Gibson, Brenda K Starr, Denise Lopez, The Thompson Twins, Blow Monkeys, Five Star and Art Of Noise. “Sergio unfortunately passed away in 1991. He was a wonderful person full of life that loved music and was a great people person. Anyone who knew him loved him, and I’m sure wherever he is he’s listening to music.”