20 Years To The Day!

RAJRAJ tenacious local 7,780 Posts

On this day in 1999, I created an online community dedicated to the art of "crate digging" (unearthing under-appreciated lost vinyl gems). I had no idea the impact it would make and how many lives and careers it would affect. 20 years later, I would simply like to say thank you to all who has supported Soul Strut past and present. After much deliberation, I still plan to be involved with keeping the web site and archives afloat. Leave a comment with your fondest Soul Strut memory. Cheers!
asstroklezmer electro-thug beatsnzshadowDORkicks79YemskyMoogMan


  • Congrats! You should be proud. My favorite memory is when someone(I forget who) discovered a version of Mardi Gras without the bells!

  • Congratulations on the 20th anniversary! So much good music discovered through this place, and I've met a bunch of great people. I haven't been much of a poster, but I've been poppin in almost everyday since the start (I came here through the crates list) to see what's up. Contributed some mixes and ish lists with my bro as the nutsons back in the days.
    Some of my favorite SS memories have been the heatrock auctions and nzshadows jizzmop stories from his days as a porn store clerk

  • JRootJRoot 861 Posts
    For about five years, which spanned my marriage and the birth of my first child, Soulstrut was my online home. The site I checked when I opened my computer, the site I refreshed to see how the latest geopolitical battle between Vitamin, Rockadelic, and MannyBolone was evolving, and the place I developed the only true online friendships I've ever had.  Sounds corny, but it's true. This was in the days before the whole internet was in everybody's hands. (Who remembers when Cosmo started a thread titled "I'M POSTING THIS FROM MY PHONE"  on some back to the future vibe?) Some of my soulstrut amigos have transcended to other platforms (mainly Facebook and Instagram), and others have transitioned to real life friends who I can text and call and ask for information and favors in cities across America and all over the world. You know who you are.

    It's really impossible to pick a fondest soulstrut memory - it was a daily barrage of hilarious, insightful banter.  Revisiting epic threads still makes me laugh to this day (e.g. in a thread about Israel, "Rock[adelic], I get the feeling that if it were up to you, you would have simply nuked the whole Middle East just to be thorough about it."). Anyone who checks the Temple of the Dog thread and doesn't LOL is not a friend to me. 

    The two best collective moments on the site were (1) SecretChimp finding Mingering Mike (both at the flea market and later IRL); and (2) the Hurricane Katrina auctions. The latter raised over $30,000 to support New Orleans and the former is now in the Smithsonian. https://americanart.si.edu/artist/mingering-mike-30363  

    My memories of Soulstrut are not complete without the legacy of our best beloved strutters lost along the way, including these three passionate and authentic visionaries: 
    DJ Stef - RIP 2017 https://soundcloud.com/mike-manewitz/dj-stef-hip-hop-94-side-a
    Breakself - RIP 2011 https://www.soulstrut.com/Mixes/aaron-anderon-on-jazzman-radio
    Matthew Africa - RIP 2012 https://www.soulstrut.com/Mixes/matthew-africa-dj-b.-cause-soul-boulders
    If you didn't have the chance to know them, I'm sorry for you, and sorry for us all that they are gone. Listen to the mixes linked above and join me in wishing they were still with us.

    Huge thank you to Raj for the vision to put this site together and the fortitude to KEEP it together. The world has changed quickly over the past two decades. Genuine community endures.  Soulstrut por vida.  

  • ketanketan Warmly booming riffs 3,105 Posts
    Congrats, Raj!  What a great legacy, man. This is an incredible place to learn for music nerds.  

    the latest geopolitical battle between Vitamin, Rockadelic, and MannyBolone 
    This summarizes what I miss about the current  old strut - poasters who aren't here anymore (so many people i appreciated to name) and the general stunts and saltiness.

    Have you started thinking about transition planning for your inevitable demise? 

  • JimsterJimster Cruffiton.etsy.com 6,920 Posts
    Still the only place worth bothering with on the internets!  Thanks for some great times and the opportunity to meet great folks.

    FB is a shitshow, a dumpster fire - with even less chance of finding anything meaningful than an actual dumpster fire.

    Keep the fires burning and the tables turning.  SS RHYDD OR DIE.

  • Congratulations Raj. The 20 year website club, I can't think of many others. You and SomethingAwful and Google and Amazon.

    My memory number 1 was being the teenage little dude looking up "funk music" on altavista or some shit and discovering you could download mixes of music that wasn't on the radio... I wish I could remember more but the one that always sticks out to me is the "Rockin' With Seka" porn OST mix. I think that was a Raj mix maybe from before other DJs were posting any? '99?

    Number 2 was realizing, later into my teens, that my favorite college radio DJ (I had since discovered non-top-40 radio), in fact several of my favorites, were all posting in the same place I'd just been visiting for the flamewars and/or small tastes of the boundless music knowledge I'd never fully possess. Like, Matthew Africa, Dollar Bin, etc. Oddly enough I did end up meeting both those guys in brief stints at their respective stations but I didn't geek out over having lurked the Strut. The mid 2000s were not a time for recognizing somebody from the internet and saying "I know you from the internet". I didn't really know him personally but I still miss Matthew - his show, his podcast with Serg. 

    But reading SS at this time was like inside baseball for me. This was a time when I was obsessively taping off the radio, not just when something good came on, but also making, basically, pause-button collages and mixes using live radio as the sample source. I would stay up late making these damn things and getting to know the schedules of the Bay Area stations. But it was still a time of absolute musical mystery for me. The main way I found new stuff to dig for was somebody would play a track on the radio, I'd miss the back announce and I'd never find it. Or I'd hear it and never be able to find the damn album.

    So stuff like the original Salma Hayeking of Monty Stark was mindblowing to someone who'd otherwise just hear like an absolute basic, like, Ohio Players song or something and lose my shit trying to figure out who it was. Especially when I didn't know anyone else who was at all into what I was into. The number of bands I've started first, and then sheer force-of-willed into my genres later, now stands at 3.

    Heatrocks for Katrina was a special moment, edpowers "fuck the previous dj..." post, the anal-fixation of ap, the "record days" where I'd discover loads of stuff in one day that I'd only see discussed otherwise, the one time HarveyCanal seriously claimed that Juvenile's "Slow Motion" was the single greatest song of the 21st century, supertoaster/poaster, there are loads of moments, but I think it's worth bringing up the current day too.

    We're fast reaching a point where everybody is starting to see the facebook-insta-twitter nexus for what they are, data mining operations and surveillance for the most banal and stupid of reasons - advertising - and the incredible detrimental psychic side effects of mass social media networks. It's not to say these things don't have their place and positive purposes. But I was wondering the other day why I still check forums and I think the format of a BBS, while still totally capable of driving somebody mad, by nature can never, say, drive an entire generation of over-65s mad the way facebook minion memes and Fox have destroyed the minds of millions. The sooner we realize that anything posted on facebook, video or text, is to be treated with the same trust as any trash from 4chan or whatever, the better. I don't know that forums will have some kind of rebirth after people realize that, but the status quo won't last and I really think it's healthier for me to check a few topics on a few boards than scroll forever through 40% commercial messages. I hope I'm not the only one.


  • dollar_bindollar_bin I heartily endorse this product and/or event 2,326 Posts

  • Hell yeah pimp, shouts to Mr. Sparkle too   

  • dollar_bindollar_bin I heartily endorse this product and/or event 2,326 Posts
    Hell yeah pimp, shouts to Mr. Sparkle too   


    @dollar_bin on IG

    klezmer electro-thug beats

  • ElectrodeElectrode Los Angeles 3,096 Posts
    The Southern California meetups at various record stores, DJ nights and swap meets a decade ago (!?!) were fun; trading records and hanging out with Crink, Dizzy, Thes, Guzzo, Asprin, Drez, Yuichi, Shig, Einstein and various east coast regulars like Iron Monkey passing through. Thank you all. Thank you RAJ.

  • Congrats...love those crates!!

  • billbradleybillbradley You want BBQ sauce? Get the fuck out of my house. 2,891 Posts
    I have checked Soul Strut almost daily for close to as long as the site has been active. The ISH, finds posts, and all around music knowledge spread on the site and forums is immense. Soul Strut led me to meet some really cool record nerds over the years that I'm still friends with today. Thanks for keeping the site alive Raj.

  • waxjunkywaxjunky 1,848 Posts
    SoulStrut for me is synonymous with the dotcom boom, as I spent all of my work time here from 1999-2004. I learned far more than I can ever pay back, and it’s not even close. I lost touch with SS around 2005 as life took new directions, and it seems many others did, too. Obviously I still pop back in here from time to time. This site was seriously robust with content in its heyday and there’s too many memories to really mention. Thanks for all of it.

  • dizzybulldizzybull Eerie Dicks 330 Posts
    SoCal swap meets - going to Roscoe’s w/ Guzzo, Asprin, Daze, etc etc , talking to Anthony Pearson whiles he’s flipping through the crates (he was surprisingly normal in real life)
    Karaoke in LA’s korea town with DJ Anna, Granpa Shig, Guzzo, Cas, and Cut Chemist…. 
    Watching Cut Chemist juggle some records in Thes One’s kitchen at a Yacht Rock party and thinking “This is the coolest thing I have ever seen”
    Riding around SF with PUTS after a show.  
    Actually the SF crew always came strong.  Tons of good memories hanging out with all those guys
    Seeing the MIngering Mike exhibit in DC was surreal.  I kept seeing these record covers and I felt like I was there when they were discovered because I was on soultrut that day while the whole thing was going down
    Guzzo on Blind Date
    Hanging out backstage w/ Einstein before an Ugly Duckling show
    All that old classic shit like LeToupt and TheCrates Herbed? Never That Son.  Soulstrut-isms still pollute my vocabulary.  Vindicated!
    This summer I was at a meeting in Japan for work and Herm posts something on facebook and tags the guy sitting a few seats away from me and I was like “YOU KNOW HERM?!”  That sort of real-life connection small world stuff still happens and it’s crazy.  What are the odds?
    I remember DJ Sheep taking me record shopping in Taipei
    Beef with my man L13/Kala (good times)
    I remember a birthday party at Thes One’s house and O-Dub was there and they were chatting away about whatever and I really do think that it was soul strut that took it from “Oliver Mark ass Twang” disses on a record (because he was just some record reviewer and they were just some rap group) to dudes with families and kids hanging out at a birthday party.
    Hanging out with Iron Monkey in Gary Wilson’s van before a show. That guy was a trip. I do believe he was stoned at the time.
    Top Fives, finds, rants
    The animated GIFs on soul strut are still the funniest on the planet to me
    Endless Flight and Herb Alpert remix contests
    All the Salma Hayek Moments...Monty Stark (RIP) was going to play at my wedding but he got hurt and couldn’t make it, but Iron Monkey and DJ Still Life DJ’d it and as expected it was DOPE and everybody had a blast. 
    There are so many memories I couldn’t possibly ever list them all….

  • mannybolonemannybolone Los Angeles, CA 15,025 Posts

    klezmer electro-thug beatspara11ax

  • JimsterJimster Cruffiton.etsy.com 6,920 Posts

  • JimsterJimster Cruffiton.etsy.com 6,920 Posts
    "... I don't know that forums will have some kind of rebirth after people realize that, but the status quo won't last and I really think it's healthier for me to check a few topics on a few boards than scroll forever through 40% commercial messages. I hope I'm not the only one."

    That makes at least two of us.

  • so... who was puto bong bong?

  • shit yeah brother.

    thanks for the DECADES of great memories and lasting friendships.

  • para11axpara11ax No-style-havin' mf'er 398 Posts


    The epic salt between Frank and Amir

    The deep and endless music knowledge 

    The humour and intellect from some posters on here

    The Strut-isms (I still use “please be serious” IRL)

    It’s amazing how fast time flies.

    Thanks for everything, Raj, and all of you who have contributed in one way or another ❤️
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