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Shawn Lee’s Ping Pong Orchestra Hits the Hits!

What happens when producers run outta rare grooves to sample? They make hits that sound like rare grooves. On Hits the Hits!, Shawn Lee’s covers mutate the likes of OutKast and Kylie into a ’60s and ’70s “library” mélange of funk, soul, and casino-band tunes. What could’ve been a throwaway novelty is instead a ripe parody. Lee converts Amy Winehouse’s inebriated soul into a sassy flute melody to lead his poppy cover of “Rehab.” Missy Elliott’s “Get Ur Freak On” jumps from the Middle East to Surf City, and Britney Spears’ “Toxic” becomes Bollywood sitar-funk. A few covers are too faithful to the originals, but Lee reminds one that even the hippest, trendiest hits of today may be tomorrow’s kitsch.

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