breathe carolina smash mouth
[Photos via Breathe Carolina, Smash Mouth/YouTube]

Scene beatmasters Breathe Carolina have returned with a breezy version of 1999 hit “All Star” from Smash Mouth. The BC creative center of Dave Schmitt and Tommy Cooperman were approached by Universal Records to reenvision the track with a modern production sheen to celebrate its 20th anniversary. 

“We got an email from [the label] asking us [to remix it],” Schmitt says. “I’m not sure how they even chose us. [Reps from the label] said it was the song’s 20th anniversary, and they were going to do all this stuff for it. We didn’t ask a lot of questions. We were like, ‘Yeah, let’s go!’”

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Schmitt says the label wanted an EDM-styled mix of the song, maintaining its upbeat nature. “Nothing too too crazy,” he says, “which is right up our alley. It’s a pretty energetic song, so we were thinking that it still needed to be upbeat and fun. The first version of it, they sent it back with a couple of notes [on the mix]. We tried to stay close to the original vibe of the song. 

“We then went back and thought about it and did a full second version that was much different, and that one was the winner,” Schmitt continues. “The original chords, melody and key of the song are really unique. When we first did it, we stuck to the classic progression and structure of the song. When we went back, we wanted to see what would happen if we put some more emotional chords behind it. We rearranged some notes and made it a little more prettier, if that makes sense. It gave it a whole new vibe, and I think that’s what people liked.”

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The BC team know that the song—despite its undeniable catchiness—is also a musical punchline of sorts, an audio meme that loops around and never, ever goes away. While Schmitt acknowledges that mindset, he’s far more reverent to the band’s original song.

“It doesn’t matter what age you are,” he says. “Everybody knows that song. It doesn’t matter what kind of music you listen to. Doesn’t matter if you only listen to hip-hop or you only listen to country or whatever: That song has stood the test of time. You’ve heard it. You know it. It’s forever going to be a banger. We were always down for it. It was a lot different from things we’d done in the past, so it was like a perfect match in a weird way.”

The label liked what the duo did, but Schmitt doesn’t know what the members of Smash Mouth think.

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“We actually haven’t had any direct contact with the band,” he says. “Everybody’s all right with it. We’re going to do a studio walk-through session where we explain how we made it. The label want to put a lot of cool press behind it. It’s a cool thing that we get to be a part of.”

Expect more activity from Breathe Carolina very soon: Schmitt says not only are they doing shows, but there will soon be an announcement about a brand-new album. Watch this space…

Check out the Breathe Carolina remix of the classic Smash Mouth track here and below.