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1996 Dance Countdown [Mixtape Memories]

Posted by on June 10, 2010

Welcome to the first “Mixtape Memories” posting. Here, our readers, writers and artists are invited to list songs on their old self-made or gift mixtapes and mix CDs; share why the mix was created; and reveal their thoughts when they look back at  their compilations.

Seems simple enough, right? If you have a majority dance, pop and/or R&B mix you’d like to share with other readers, drop us a line at

Now that the formalities are out of the way, we present to you J.Ly‘s “1996 Dance Countdown.”

The ‘1996 Dance Countdown’ was created for a party during my junior year in high school. No one asked me to make it, but I couldn’t and still can’t stand a party with lame music. My solution: come up with a countdown of the ‘hottest’ dance songs based on the tastes and shared experiences of my friends who would be in attendance. The list truly captures that moment in time, yet reflects the music my crew listened to while growing up in Phoenix. In fact, the idea for this mixtape was inspired by local radio station Power 92’s Top 250 Dance Songs of All Time countdown that aired Labor Day weekend. (Gloria Gaynor‘s ‘I Will Survive’ was No. 1.) The songs played in countdown order, so No. 50 was first, followed by 49, 48 and so on until we reached No. 1 — and all the songs filled two and a half 90-minutes cassette tapes (Maxells, my favorite brand). Today, I’d never in my right mind put ‘Baby Got Back,’ ‘Macarena,’ ‘California Love’ or ‘Me So Horny’ on a mix CD and, if I remade this countdown, ‘Gonna Make You Sweat’ would probably rank higher. —- J.Ly

1. Los Del Rio – “Macarena”
2. 2 Live Crew – “Me So Horny”
3. MC Luscious – “Boom! I Got Your Boyfriend”
4. Pebbles – “Mercedes Boy”
5. Ruffneck feat. Yavahn – “Everybody Be Somebody”
6. Junior Vazquez – “If Madonna Calls”
7. Madonna – “Into the Groove”
8. TLC – “Shock Dat Monkey”
9. C+C Music Factory – “Gonna Make You Sweat (Everybody Dance Now)”
10. 2 Unlimited – “Tribal Dance”
11. La Bouche – “Be My Lover”
12. Sir Mix-A-Lot – “Swap Meet Louie”
13. Exposé – “Come Go With Me”
14. Katalina – “DJ Girl”
15. Cynthia – “Change On Me”
16. Jody Watley – “Don’t You Want Me”
17. Karyn White – “Secret Rendezvous”
18. Planet Soul – “Feel the Music”
19. Sir Mix-A-Lot – “Baby Got Back”
20. Madonna – “Express Yourself”
21. Janet Jackson – “If”
22. MC Hammer – “It’s All Good”
23. Quad City DJs – “C’mon and Ride It (The Train)”
24. Exposé – “Point of No Return”
25. Coolio – “1-2-3-4 (Sumpin’ New)”
26. La Bouche – “Sweet Dreams”
27. Shannon – “Let the Music Play”
28. Outthere Brothers – “Boom, Boom, Boom”
29. 20 Fingers – “Short, Short Man”
30. Dis n’ Dat – “Party”
31. Crystal Waters – “100% Pure Love”
32. Tupac feat. Dr. Dre – “California Love”
33. Gabrielle – “Dreams”
34. Taylor Dayne – “Tell It To My Heart”
35. Debbie Gibson – “Shake Your Love”
36. Bobby Brown – “Don’t Be Cruel”
37. MC Hammer – “Pumps & A Bump”
38. Laura Martinez – “Ritmo Latino”
39. Boyz II Men – “Motownphilly”
40. Paula Abdul – “Cold Hearted”
41. Zhané – “Hey Mr. DJ”
42. 2 Unlimited – “Twilight Zone”
43. Planet Soul – “Set U Free”
44. 24K – “Don’t Go There”
45. Montell Jordan – “This Is How We Do It”
46. Whitney Houston – “I Wanna Dance with Somebody”
47. Jody Watley – “Looking For a New Love”
48. En Vogue – “Free Your Mind”
49. BLACKstreet feat. Dr. Dre & Queenpen – “No Diggity”
50. New Kids on the Block – “You’ve Got It (The Right Stuff)”

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