Your (Halloween) Mix Fix: El Kool Kyle

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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: El Kool Kyle

MIXTAPE: Baylandoween 2011

Yes, I know that I already featured a mixtape by El Kool Kyle on this column not that long ago. And yes, I know that we’ve recently posted several Halloween-themed mixtapes. But I’m pretty confident this one here deserves exceptional treatment.

Besides being one of the true pioneers of the ñu-cumbia scene in the Bay Area, El Kool Kyle is an indefatigable record collector who periodically travels up and down the Andes in search for ultra-rare pieces of vintage tropical vinyls. Amongst those thousands of precious obscure LPs and 45s, he managed to find over one hour worth of horror-themed tracks and mix them together on this live set (the title says 2011 but I think that was a typo, it was most probably recorded in 2012).

There’s plenty of devil invocations (apparently it’s a common trend to ask the devil for a woman), tales of vampires (not the Twilight-era cute blood-suckers), classic movie monsters, graveyards, and even zombies. Would you like to listen to Michael Jackson’s all-time-favorite Halloween classic “Thriller” in Spanish and over a cumbia rhythm? El Kool Kyle has that one on vinyl and drops it half way through the mix. There are plenty more scary surprises in this mixtape, ideal for tonight’s festivities.