There’s money in old rope! Why this blog’s statement about veteran house producer Michael Gray doing well out of remixing archive tracks during 2021 is correct…

Last week, this blog published an article about the Traxsource Top 200 chart of 2021. I commented on the large number of remixes of old tracks in the chart – and pointed out that Michael Gray had done very nicely out of this trend. Since then, I’ve had a few emails complaining about my treatment of Gray.

One, for example, tells me to treat him with “more respect” due to his “enormous contribution to house music”. To which I have to ask whether this person has ever read this blog. Yes, Gray has put a lot into the world of house music for decades, but this does not give him a pass from scrutiny – and nor should it.

So let’s go through Gray’s Traxsource page and his remixes for 2021. This list only includes his own work – for the purpose of this exercise, I’m excluding anything he did as part of Full Intention. During 2021, he put out the following remixes of old songs…

Supakings – Back And Forth (Michael Gray Remix) – originally released in 1999.
Adeva – In And Out Of My Life (Michael Gray Remix) – originally released in 1988.
DJ Fudge & Chinua Hawk – Love X Love (Michael Gray Remix) – cover of a song originally released in 1980.
Kathy Brown – Happy People (Michael Gray Remix) – originally released in 1999.
Junior Jack & Glory Feat. Jocelyn Brown – Hold Me Up (Michael Gray Extended Remix) – originally released in 2003.
Sleeque – One For The Money (Michael Gray Remix) – originally released in 1986.
Blaze Presents UDAUFL Feat. Barbara Tucker – Most Precious Love (Michael Gray Remix) – originally released in 2005.
Phil Lorraine & James Hurr Feat. Sian-Lee – Bodyswerve (Michael Gray Remix) – cover of a song originally released in 2003.
Risque Connection – Saturday (Michael Gray Remix) – cover of a song originally released in 1978.

That’s at least nine – excluding several from 2020 which got a re-release on a compilation or anywhere else. And aside from Dr Packer, I’m struggling to think of anyone else who comes close to similarly cashing in on this trend.

Incidentally, I don’t particularly blame Gray for doing this – beggars can’t exactly be choosers in the current climate. But it just shows the rate at which house music is cannibalising itself…