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20 Years of Bootie! Celebrating SF’s Iconic Mashup Night

Updated: Apr 04, 2024 10:45
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Back in the mid-2000s, my friends and I regularly swapped music from one of SF’s longest-running mashup nights, Bootie Mashup. April marks 20-years of ‘Bootie‘. Since 2003, Bootie has been creating genre-themed mashup nights that blend both current and throwback pop songs and often feature fun variety show acts dancing and performing in front of big, crazy dance parties.

Renowned for its infectious energy and innovative music curation, Bootie Mashup has garnered widespread acclaim across The Bay and the globe.

Bootie – Cat Club 2024

So much of SF seems to fade away and events like Bootie Mashup remind us of “the good ole days” while simultaneously pushing us to love what’s new in The Bay. For me, this is most especially true when it comes to music. For this anniversary feature, I wanted to get into what makes Bootie an evergreen staple for SF and what’s been the key to how they’ve been able to keep the good times rolling over two decades in The Bay.

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We asked the co-creator, producer, promoter, and resident DJ for Bootie Mashup, Adriana A, about the early days of Bootie in SF: 

Adriana A: “Back in 2003, when we first started DJing mashups, we’d get frustrated by people coming up to the DJ booth asking us to “play the normal song!” Remember, this is back when the scene was brand new, and almost nobody knew what a mashup was. People would sometimes get annoyed hearing their favorite song with a different vocal or instrumental melody. So we started a party dedicated to only playing 100% mashups, so at least people would know what to expect. We called it “Bootie” as a nod to mashups being called “bootlegs” over in the U.K., where the scene began, since all the tracks are produced illegally, without copyright clearances,” said Adriana A.

Bootie’s Monster Show

Bootie’s Perfect Mashup: The Crowd and The DJ

From the “double woo” to their ability to build a community of badass DJs. The key to Bootie’s long-lasting ability here in SF is the community that surrounds them.

Adriana A:I never get tired of “the double woo.” It’s when we drop a beloved track that’s immediately recognizable by the opening chords, and the crowd goes “woooo!” But they know as soon as the vocal kicks in, it’s gonna be different from what they’re expecting, so they’re waiting for that surprise. If it’s an equally loved vocal line from a different song, the crowd often goes “woooo!” again. And that’s an incredibly satisfying feeling, to surprise and delight people like that,” says Adriana A.

Bootie on Halloween at DNA Lounge – always a great time.

I love that! The elusive double woo! Puts you right there with the crowd at a Bootie night. But the only way that you can achieve that Woo-Woo is by being a talented DJ that knows how to work the crowd and you’ve curated a perfect mashup that will pull out that kind of enthusiastic response. Over the years, there has been a thriving DJ community tied to Bootie.

Adriana A,Almost as soon as we started, DJs and producers started coming out of the woodwork to share their mashup tracks with us, with many of them ending up being resident and guest DJs for us. The open and eclectic nature of mashup culture lent itself to a weird San Francisco artistic aesthetic and we became fertile ground for a thriving scene.”

Adriana A continued, “We saw this happen again on a bigger scale when Bootie Mashup launched a Twitch channel as soon as the global pandemic shut everything down in March 2020. Suddenly, once again, tons of new producers from around the world started popping up and reaching out, and it’s wonderful to share ideas and try to surprise each other with crazy musical combinations,” Adriana A. recalls.

2003 – DJ Cip Cipriano (left) and Adriana from the early days of Bootie at Cherry Bar

The Epic Musical Vault from Bootie Mashup

Renowned as pioneers in the global mashup movement, the San Francisco-based DJ duo A Plus D have not just cemented their status as beloved selectors adept at seamlessly merging disparate musical genres, they are dedicated champions of the mashup craft. Their mashups have garnered widespread popularity and are some of my personal favorite ear worms.

If you went to Bootie during the early days, you’ll remember the Goddigger and Beethoven’s 5th mashup but there’s always a surprise combination at every Bootie event. When I asked Adriana, “Which Bootie-born track remains a constant favorite for you?” her response resonated deeply, highlighting the enduring presence of community and timeless tunes within the scene.

Adriana A, “This is such a tough question to answer! I often say that anyone who has a favorite song needs to listen to more music! But there are definitely trends within our mashup community, and I used to say it was a rite of passage for every producer to make at least one mashup of “Smells Like Teen Spirit.” It was like that back in 2002, when 2manyDJs first mashed it up with “Bootylicious” by Destiny’s Child, and that Nirvana song is still such an evergreen, that rule probably still applies today,” recalls Adriana A.

Here’s one of my favs – a mashup of Missy Elliot and Le Tigre:

One of the coolest parts when talking to Adriana is just her ability to come back time and time again to those who inspire her and who have inspired the community as a whole. This type of scene thrives on sharing and pushing each other to keep finding new creative ways to bring musical genres together to create an unexpected and fun combination that brings our that “Double Woo”. Adriana kept reminding me about guest DJs and DJs who have helped Bootie along the way such as sending me over some images of Jupiter Gatling from Berlin, one of their resident DJs who has been pretty instrumental in keeping Bootie going the last few years post-pandemic times.

Jupiter Gatling from Berlin

“Post-pandemic, Bootie Mashup’s big thing has been bringing our little slice of mashup culture to other parties and scenes, so it’s been really fun to be guest DJs at various events around the country. And we love embracing a theme while still keeping the music mashed up. At the end of April, we’re booked at Neotropolis, a cyberpunk festival in the Mojave Desert, where we’ll be doing a closing set of futuristic pop mashups,” Adriana A. says.

Celebrating 20-Years with Bootie Mashup in SF @ CAT CLUB – APRIL 6th

9 PM – 2 AM: 1190 FOLSOM @ 8TH
$10-15 Tickets

Bootie has consistently infused its events with a diverse variety show, featuring performers of various talents gracing the stage. Even throughout the pandemic, Bootie found a way to keep the mashup spirit alive via Twitch. Adriana would host engaging discussions about mashups, reminiscent of a talk show, such as this July 2020 session. While previously held at DNA Lounge for many years, Bootie now calls Cat Club home. There’s a excitement around the new space, as Bootie continues its tradition of offering attendees a vibrant variety show experience and this space has multiple rooms.

“Our 20-Year Anniversary on Saturday April 6 is shaping up to be good one. It’s at our new monthly home, Cat Club, and I love the fact that they have two rooms, so we can book six of our longtime DJs, plus do both an 11:11 Show with singers doing live mashups, as well as a drag and burlesque Midnight Mashup Show in the other room. It’s always been really important for us to incorporate a show element into our parties. When we started, almost no DJ dance parties integrated performers into the night, but now you see it much more frequently. I’d like to think that we helped usher in that trend. All DJ dance parties should have drag and burlesque and circus performers!” – Adriana A.

Adriana A
DJ Tyme
Jupiter Gatling

DJ Tyme and DJ EN8

11:11 SHOW: live vocal mashups by
Trixxie Carr (Smash-Up Derby 2004-2009)
Myster C (Ya Mamma’s Basement)
Mimi Lee Ferrari (Smash-Up Derby 2010-2020)

Bootie in Cat Club 2023

DJ Tripp
DJ JimiG (live guitar mashups)

MIDNIGHT MASHUP SHOW: drag & burlesque by
Elsa Touche (The Monster Show)
Qu’in de la Noche & Leon G. Ray (Hubba Hubba Revue)
CeZar The Superstar (Flux Vertical Theatre)

There’s always some performances along with epic mashups – Anarchy Queen from a past Bootie event

Connect with Bootie Mashup Online:

Bootie Radio:
IG: @bootiemashup 
FB: @bootiemashup

Beloved Heklina (2nd from right) at a past Bootie Night – Trixxie Carr is in the center who will be at the 20th anniversary event!

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Katy Atchison

Katy Atchison

Katy has lived in The Bay Area since the age of 3. While other kids were attending summer camp & soccer practice, she was raised selling wares at craft shows with her working artist parents and spent vacations in a small 1920s Montana log cabin. This has all given her a unique perspective on the ever-changing texture of San Francisco and the Greater Bay Area. Currently a blend of all that is The Bay Area - she's a web designer at a tech-company, artist and DIY teacher.