Brian Burton aka Danger Mouse is a producer, composer, and musician that has been an influence to the music industry.Brian was born in White Plains, New York in 1
977. What brought him recognition in 2004 was having mashed together Jay-Z’s “The Black Album” and The Beatles “The Beatles” album, also referred to as The White Album. Brian “Danger Mouse” Burton has beenin a few bands outside of just
producing for artists. Gnarls Barkely and his latest band with James Mercer of “The Shins” called “Broken Bells”.
There are probably several instances where Danger Mouses work on records have inspired Artists’ music and trends that are used in music currently. Of those many possibilities there are a few that stick out to me specifically because at that time I was watching as these instances occurred in music. With Danger Mouse and Cee Lo Green’s creation of Gnarls Barkley (2003) and their release of St. Elsewhere (2006) an interesting trend started in music. To me it seemed as if they took quick movable music and put it with Cee Lo’s voice to make something that sounded so hypnotic to the body you would have to tap your foot. Now I realized that the baselines used in most of the songs on St. Elsewhere reminded me of motown but with a tempo increase. Later on in music a trend of bringing back these funky, jazzy, motownish rhythms would be in all the new pop songs people would be singing while walking down the street.
Danger Mouse didn’t just start those baselines and drum beats in Gnarls Barkley. While he was producing songs on the Gorillaz album “Demon Days” he seemed to have did something familiar to that style, even though on the “Demon Dayz” album it was distinctly rock sounding. This shows a single characteristic with Brian Burtons music, its lively. Another item I noticed that Danger Mouse likes to do or possibly does unconsciously, is mix hip hop and rock music. Thats pretty evident however if you look back at what got him recognized, “The Grey Album”. It shows in this current day as well with the music of Broken Bells, the band that is comprised of Brian Burton and James Mercer. The song “Holding for Life” shows the merge of rock and hip hop styles, along with some Bee Gee-esk vocals.
After diving through Danger Mouses work throughout his career so far it makes perfect since why I want to add a playlist to my spotify account dedicated strictly to music he’s worked on. Along with that I’ve seen that with one labor of inspiration a wave can be created in the industry. Small at first, then prominent later on. In five years if I’ve continued to actively look back and see where other musicians, producers and engineers came upon their inspiration, I will be able to figure out what may cause my own inspiration that might make a wave.
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