Edit The Edit ‘Two Sides Of Sympathy’ (greg wilson edit of pta mash-ups)
Previously limited vinyl only in 2007 & 2009.
Of all the tracks I’ve played since my DJ return at the end of ’03, this has been undoubtedly the most requested. It was very much a signature track for a number of years, and still makes an appearance from time to time nowadays.
It all stems from when I picked up a 12” from Piccadilly Records in Manchester during the summer of 2005. It was by The P.T.A (Paul Martin and Tyrrell) on Throw Away Records, and included two mash-ups, both of which used the vocal from Amerie’s ‘1 Thing’, which had been a big R&B hit earlier that year. On one side of the 12” it had been mashed with Massive Attack’s ‘Unfinished Sympathy’ (this was titled ‘Unfinished Thing’), whilst on the other, ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ by the Rolling Stones (‘One For The Devil’). Not only had each of these combinations melded brilliantly, but both had ‘Sympathy’ in the title. This impressed me no end – some genius juxtaposition going on there.
Listening closer it was clear that there’d been some tampering, but it wasn’t until much later that I realised that, apart from the Amerie acappella, everything had been re-created by Canadian producer / DJ Tyrrell, including Keith Richard’s iconic guitar solo, which sounded better than ever - I’d presumed that the version of ‘Sympathy For The Devil’ he’d used had come from some Andrew Loog Oldham type instrumental (as was the case when The Verve famously sampled Oldham’s orchestral arrangement of the Stones’ ‘The Last Time’, on their 90’s classic ‘Bitter Sweet Symphony’), so this only added to my awe at what Tyrrell and Paul had somehow managed to magic up.
Brilliance on vinyl is all good and well, but I’d bought the track with the dancefloor in mind, so it was now a case of how it walked the walk. Straight away I had a problem – which side to play? They were both really strong and I couldn’t make my mind up at first, but then I went between the horns of this dilemma and decided to mix one straight into the other, as though it was a single continuous track. I originally did this live (they appear together this way on a recording from Birmingham’s much lamented Jigsaw night, where I played in August ’05), but then I decided to put together an edit so I could take the combined length down by about three minutes and tighten the idea up. I called this version ‘Two Sides Of Sympathy’ – I utilized the percussion from ‘One For The Devil’ for the intro, before moving into the main body of ‘Unfinished Thing’, which then mixes back into ‘One for The Devil’ during the breakdown, reaching its climax with the guitar solo. To round things off I gave it a customary peppering of samples and spins.
The edit went Big with a capital B for me, and everywhere I went people were asking for it – it was one of those tracks you couldn’t stop playing because you knew that people would be disappointed not to hear it. When I came to put together my Essential Mix for Radio 1 in January ‘09, ‘Two Sides Of Sympathy’ was probably the first track on my list (the mix focusing on the tunes that had served me best since my comeback five years previous).
A limited 12” on the Edit The Edit inprint was made available in 2007 – as the name suggests, this was for my edits of other peoples edits (or mash-ups, as in this case). The original P.T.A release was fully credited on the label – I’d made contact with Tyrrell via email and he’d given his blessing for the 12” to be pressed. We got to meet for the first time when I was in London appearing at Plastic People in April ’07, where he’d hear me play ‘Two Sides’ over that killer system.
In 2009 it would re-appear on vinyl, this time as the second release in the Reactivate series (following on from ‘I Was A Teenage DJ’ / ‘Gotta Keep Workin’ It’), a new wave of DJ demand resulting from its Essential Mix inclusion.
Given that I can’t list the artists as Amerie, Massive Attack & the Rolling Stones (because two thirds of that trio are Tyrrell in disguise), I’ll stick to Edit The Edit ‘Two Sides Of Sympathy', which is how it’s been listed most often, Essential Mix included.
When I asked Tyrrell if he was happy for me to upload it here he told me to ‘go ahead, spread the love’. So here it is, maintaining the bi-yearly sequence – 2005 original P.T.A 12”, 2007 Edit The Edit 12”, 2009 Reactivate 12”, and now 2011 SoundCloud download.
Greg Wilson – August 2011