ASCMC Presents: A Better Mashup

Are you coughing? No? You should be. Because Saturday night is going to be sick. Everything you want out of your weekend: A freaky dance party. We’re not talking your run-of-the-mill bump n' grind sesh in a cramped, sweaty, inhospitable lounge. Oh no, this Saturday, it’s on. The spacious, well-conditioned McKenna Auditorium, aka Club McKenna, invites you to come make it happen with up and coming star, E-603. Who the fuck is E-603!? Relax, I’ll tell you. E-603. Crazy name, right? Sounds like one of those new-age mash-up artists. Let’s break it down. E stands for Ethan. The 603, that’s an area code, but where? You guessed it: New Hampshire. Sorry if you misunderstood - E-603 is coming from New Hampshire to spin some of the hottest mash-up dance music of 2009.

You know the sound. Someone is always playing this interfused genre on campus. Rap and techno. Ludacris and Daft Punk. Notorious spitting on a Matt and Kim track. Nothing could be better for a dance party: your favorite lyrics with ecstasy worthy beats. But it is not just quality track sampling that makes E-603 stand out. Promise.

E-603’s real name is Ethan Ward. He is supposed to be a junior at Hampshire College in Western Massachusetts. Instead, he took a year off from his film degree to explore his newfound success as a musical pioneer. Yet Ethan, well, he’s as old as we are. The man is down to earth and he is ecstatic for the opportunity to come to the West Coast. He’s just a guy from the Northeast who is passionate about music and has a talent for mixing jams.

A talent for taking other artist’s music? That’s what a hater would say about this new media- the mashing. How hard is it? You mean to make those timeless hits snuggle with the feminist’s nightmare, dubbed rap? I don’t know, judge the music. You have to really listen though because it is not just two songs playing simultaneously. E-603 runs as many as seven songs at once, which have been altered and refined to fit seamlessly, despite genre polarity. I said he had a talent. True. But what Ethan seems to have, more than anything, is a commitment to his art. His latest album, Torn Up, took him over 1000 hours to complete. A year and half. If he was working with Habitat for Humanity he’d have a house by now – in a rapidly gentrifying neighborhood. His advisor at Hampshire told him no more working on music in school. Fair enough. He took the year off. And that’s where we are now.

Ethan, E-603 rather, refuses to do shows for his school. Why? He doesn’t want to give off the persona of an outrageous chief who wiles out in front of a crowd. He has to live with these people. Sure, sounds good. Though it’s not likely he’s ever going to see us again. Right. So does that mean? Yes, it does. Get psyched. E-603 – we’ll call him E, a reasonable blend of stage and real life personalities. Well, let’s just say he buys the cheapest computers he can find and covers them in saran wrap. “Who knows what is going to happen,” he says. Damn. Dude doesn’t even have a hotel room. He’s going with the flow of the night. “I’ll probably end up sleeping on someone’s floor.” I hope not. Who’s got a couch? Ladies--he’s single, attractive, and friendly, do you have room?

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