Get Cryphy: Our theme this year is "Game Six"
Photo by Anna Gulbrandsen L-R: Fundo, Jimmy 2 Times, Plain Ole Bill, and Last Word
Twin Cities DJ crew Get Cryphy had a pretty huge 2013. A year ago, DJs Plain Ole Bill, Jimmy 2 Times, Last Word, and Fundo's triumphant five-year anniversary party at First Ave cemented their reputation as the reigning kings of the Twin Cities nightlife. Drawing on the skills they've honed backing Atmosphere, P.O.S., Brother Ali and Prof, Cryphy's white-hot sound blends the very best in uptempo, club-banging rap tracks and turntablism.
Gimme Noise caught up with the gentleman of Cryphy after a late-night cramming session to finish their mixtape in promotion of this weekend's 6th annual party, which will feature national names like Spank Rock and Big Freedia for the first time.
Gimme Noise: So, we got you guys on the cover for a pretty in-depth story for last year's five-year anniversary. What have y'all been up to since then? What's life been like in Cryphyland?
Plain Ole Bill: Well, we've been maintaining our party. Since the five-year we've done the Soundset after-party again, which is another big mainroom event for us. In additon to that we've been able to do Summerfest in Milwaukee, and a couple of other bigger shows as well. We did the Prof outdoors, Zombie Pub Crawl again, so we've been trying to do some larger events in addition to our regular monthly party, and kind of performing with the six-turntable and the eight-turntable platform, just expanding on that, which is something we started doing at the last anniversary show, and even a couple of times before that. Just expanding our live show while maintaining the monthly event.
Could you elaborate on that turntable wizardry you were just talking about?
Jimmy 2 Times: When we started Cryphy, Bill and I always did the four turntables and basically what we've done is just kind of expand that to include all four members of the crew. Because Fundo's on the road a lot, often times it'll be myself, Bill, and Last Word doing six-turntable sets. We're taking the principles that Bill and I incorporated into doing four turntables, and just kind of expanding that to include another four turntables, to make a really kinda crazy DJ set where we get to make everything stack on top of each other and go HAM.
Bill: Also, we wanted to do something that was a little different from the monthly parties when we have bigger shows that we're a part of. It's a little bit different, at our monthly parties we never plan stuff, it's a little more off-the-cuff, we kind of do round-robin switching and playing on whatever set up. When we do the six or eight turntables, we usually do more planned routines in addition to live DJing with four members.
I can't wait to hear what you guys cooked up for this year's mix, last year's theme was a riff on Rocky 5000, among many other things. What kind of theme are you going with this year?
Last Word: Game Six!
Bill: Yeah! Game Six!
Last Word: Every year we kinda play off of the anniversary we have, whether it be three, four, five, whatever. This year we kinda tried to figure out what had "six" in it, and there's been a lot of big "Game Sixes" over the year in sports, so we kinda tried to play off of that.
Bill: With these mixes every year, we try to keep a similar approach and style to them, we also try to modify things a little bit. Last year, with our fifth mix, the Rocky 5000, it was a pretty big expansion on the previous years, and I think we kind of honed in on what we were going for. We were more proud of that mix than any other stuff that we had done until that point. For this year, after coming off of such a big year last year with the City Pages article and having solidified the mainroom event, we wanted to change gears a little bit this year.
Jimmy: Also, we've always been very thematic with the mix, and that's staying. We're all really into movies, we're all movie-buffs and so I think it just goes along with that, we tried to make it more of a cinematic kind of mixtape experience. This year I think the sports theme just kind of carried through. You're gonna get a lot of that when you listen to the mix.
Let's run through some tracks/artists that you discovered/got into this year that you knew you had to bring to Cyphy.
Bill: St. Paul Slim, who's our resident host for Cryphy, he's blessed us with a verse, as well as Rapper Hooks, MaLLy and Haphduzn. Those are people that we've all worked with in some capacity before, and we just really dig what those guys are doing right now. They all came through and killed it, honestly. Outside of those guys, we opened it up, "anything goes," in the initial process, is kind of where we were at, but we found ourselves falling back on artists that we just really loved. Pusha T's on our mix a few times, and we coulda fit him on there a little more.
DJ Fundo: This year's more like a Pandora's box, we didn't really have "who's popular" or "who's not," but instead like "Hey, between all four of us, who are we all really into?" We just came up with different ideas, like "I like this person" and kinda mashed 'em all together into a nice little cake.
Bill: We're also using some verses from well-known artists that we're pretty sure people haven't heard. Weird stuff that will pop up on a mixtape here or there, not a DJ mix, but on an artist mixtape, or a feature that kinda got thrown under the rug, we'll pull stuff up like that. Usually an a capella, or making an acapella is something we do, too. By using studio trickery we're able to make these exclusive versions of songs. That was one of our big goals, to to try and make this mix sound as exclusive as possible from the content.
You guys are well known as tastemakers too, your parties have been able to break songs and artists in the Twin Cities that might not have otherwise been noticed, is there anything you're really excited to show off this year?
Bill: We're really excited to have Spank Rock at the party this year. MC Spank Rock, Jimmy and I have been playing since forever, before we did Cryphy. That was one of the artists at the time that certain people dug but other people weren't really into it, but we loved it, and we pushed it.
Jimmy: It kind of emobodied what we were going for at the time, too. This really danceable rap stuff. Early on, back in 2006 or 2007, Spank Rock did a show in the 7th Street Entry and I just remember that the energy that he was putting out was just something that I felt like was really something that people should be taking note of. It really translated, and I feel like having him at the party is gonna take it to the next level. I can tell with Freedia too, that's gonna be ridiculous.
Bill: Both of those artists have a ton of energy, an undeniable energy, and they're great live performers. I think as much as a lot of people love Freedia, Freedia's been here a couple of times at the Turf Club and put on great shows, there's still a lot of people that haven't seen her and I think people are gonna be blown away.
Jimmy: Bill and I DJ'd those Freedia shows at the Turf Club and that was how we kinda got put on to the fact that she was ridiculous live, and playing her tracks at Cryphy too. We did those couple of shows at the Turf Club and just kind of knew that flavor would be really incredible at Get Cryphy.