Your Mix Fix: Birth Defects

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The word mixtape has plenty of different interpretations. It used to be that mixtapes were actually DJ sets recorded on cassette tapes, but with the coming of the digital music age, the name remained the same, but the definition expanded. Nowadays, people call mixtapes many different things, some of which are not necessarily mixed and most of which were never taped. Here we try to cover them all. In this column, Juan Data gives you a worthy one every week.

DJ: Birth Defects

MIXTAPE: Super Cumbia Power Mix 2012

Finally, summer is officially here and it’s time to attend some pool parties, wear your sexy swimsuit and show off the hot body you’ve been working hard for at the gym all spring. Or, you can always hang out in your pool-deprived backyard, like these guys on the mixtape’s cover photo, and fight the heat with the good ol’ manguera. Either way, it’s time for some wet fun, and seriously, what’s more fun than some refreshing, well mixed, classic cumbias?

Straight out of border-town, El Paso, TX, Julio Salgado comes out just in time with this summery mixtape to satiate that cumbia thirst. For some reason we don’t know, he goes by the name of Birth Defects (maybe it’s an inside joke, maybe it’s for real and we shouldn’t be making fun of him, maybe he just wants girls to ask him what his birth defect is so he can whip something out) and since he regularly plays gigs on both sides of the border, he can technically claim to be “internationally known.”

Thing is, the mixtape is surprisingly well crafted, with perfect transitions that show some mixing expertise, something that’s extremely rare to find in the traditional mexi-cumbia/sonidero scene. It’s not all about Mexican cumbia though, there’s plenty of classic colombianas (and even a surprise track by Bay Area’s own Cumbia Tokeson) but selected with a distinguishable Mexican palate. Fortunately, he doesn’t get on the mic too often to ruin the flow with cheesy announcements and shout-outs, so it’s all dance party for almost 50 minutes. Time to get wet muchachos!