The Presidents of the United States of America - Band Photo

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Sir Mix-A-Lot - Vocals
Chris Ballew - Vocals, Bass, Keyboard
Dave Dederer - Guitar, Bass
Jason Finn - Drums
Mike "Outtasite" Singleton - Vocals

"SUbSET was a much-anticipated collaboration between Seattle rapper Sir Mix-a-Lot and grunge jokesters the Presidents of the United States of America, albeit one that never quite got off the ground. The seeds of SUbSET were first planted circa 1997, with a collaborative Jimi Hendrix cover the original purpose. Instead, Mix and the Presidents -- guitarist Dave Dederer, bassist Chris Ballew, and drummer Jason Finn -- eventually worked on a bit of original material, drawing from their collective disillusionment with the music industry. Mix brought the Presidents on-stage to perform the result, "Addicted to the Fame," at a live gig in Seattle in 1998. The crowd went wild, and the quartet decided to pursue their unlikely new direction further, eventually christening themselves SUbSET. They played several showcase gigs in Seattle, and also recorded approximately one album's worth of material over 1999, provoking intense curiosity even beyond their own respective fan bases. SUbSET mounted a small-scale tour of the West Coast in early 2000, but unfortunately split up in its wake. Part of the reason was a lack of enthusiasm for the process of putting out and supporting a record, and musical differences also played a part (Mix wanted to experiment with alternative metal and industrial sounds). To date, none of the band's recordings have been officially released, though many have been leaked on the Internet." - Steve Huey, All Music Guide

"Uncompromisingly original and completely accessible at the same time, SUBSET are the role model for 2000's contemporary artists. As the Presidents of The United States of America, they worked the MTV/radio power block brilliantly and sold a shitload of records. Then, they did something completely unique: They quit! Here is a band who decided that it's better not to tour yourself to death, or to make record after record in order to keep highly-paid label executives in new Rolexes and Beemers. Rather, they saved a few bucks and thought better of selling their souls to the Gods of Commerce.
The Presidents of the United States of America are laid to rest in the cemetery of fallen soldiers, but the warrior spirit is alive and well in SUBSET. Reinforced by additional firepower in the form of Sir-Mix-A-Lot, the three original members of the Presidents have re-invented themselves with this new track (which says much more than you think it does on first listen). This is more than just a song -- it's a news report from the front lines of a war on musical artists. The body count is high. It's a lethal conflict. The songwriters are reporting as battle-scarred veterans of the highest levels of music business confrontation and the good news is they have survived intact. More than that, they are still engaging the enemy and kicking its big butt.

Forgoing the later stage career crisis of super model divorce and celebrity rehab, the Presidents said, "no thanks" to ending up on VH-1's "Behind the Music." Instead, the band did what they love doing the most: starting a band, writing songs, and ultimately, creating music they love. The fun part of being a musician. They played the game and won through the massive double-platinum success of their first album on Columbia. Now they’ve snuck back into the game like the SAS on a covert operation. You gotta love these guys.

And, in their usual progressive form, they've chosen to release their new music on SUBSET has deftly sidestepped the complications and delays of the traditional record business and have brought new music directly and immediately to their fans.

"Addicted to the Fame" is a wicked 4:04 indictment of their time served in the pop-star miasma, with Full Metal Jacketed guitar/bass figures wrapped around street beats that hit like an AK on full auto. But we're not talking Thug Life here bro', we're talking brain-power-to-the-max. Sir-Mix-a-Lot runs down a hard-edge lyric that speaks to the trick bag that is fame. Full of dips and doodles, left turns and phat beats, the song reminds me why I liked music in the first place. What's not to like? Hard-funk beats and cool guitars and a message that doesn't talk down to the listener.

As SUBSET say in the song, fame kills -- and you know that it does. This is wellspring music and it's fun too. What's not to like? Hard-funk beats and cool guitars and a message that doesn't talk down to the listener.

These men have been there, done that, and had that done to them, too. Fame kills, sho' 'nuff."

-- Wayne Kramer

Chris Ballew and Outtasite later formed The Feelings Hijackers (aka TFH). TFH also re-recorded handful of Subset tracks.

Subset (Presidents of the USA & Sir Mix-A-Lot) Demo CD

Subset Demo CD - Photo by Jason Finn

List of all known SUbSET songs:

Track: Source: Year: Details:
Addicted To Fame (version 1) Unreleased studio track ? Appeared in 2009 on Dave Dederer's MySpace page.

Different version than what was released on Jupiter/Addicted To Fame 12” promo single.
Addicted To Fame (version 2) Jupiter/Addicted To Fame 12” 2000 Only track that was officially released (on Jupiter/Addicted To Fame 12”), before Subset broke up.
Baby Got Back Live (unreleased) ? Sir Mix-A-Lot

No info if SUbSET ever recorded a studio version.
Beach Rats Unreleased studio track ? -
Blood From a Stone Unreleased studio track ? The Feelings Hijackers released their version on SupeRecord (2011, Magmata Records)
Cruisin' Unreleased live track ? Studio version?
Farmer John Unreleased live track ? Original version by The Premiers. Ofter false referred as Neil Young cover. SUbSET version has added raps by Outtasite and Sir Mix-A-Lot. Another SUbSET track that The Feelings Hijackers later hijacked...

Listen on Youtube
Girl U Want Unreleased live track ? Studio version?

Devo cover. Original version by Devo can be found at their 1980 release Freedom Of Choice.
Movie Clip Unreleased live track ? Studio version?

Loans the main riff from ZZ Top's La Grande. No studio version is know to circulate. Outtaside released his own version later on his album Right Side Down (CD version).

Outtasite wrote this on Sep 13th, 2010 to blog:

"The Movie Clip was originally a song I had recorded with Mix-a-lot shorty before Subset. During rehearsal early on, we were looking for some songs to throw in the live set. Out of nowhere PUSA started jammin the ZZ-top riff, and I started reciting the words to Movie Clip…. Mix began chiming in on the chorus….. and that became the “Subset version” I still perform that version of the song with my band till this day…….. Good times."
Ribby Rib Unreleased studio track ? Remake of an old Caspar song. The Feelings Hijackers version of this song has been officially released on their debut album T.F.H., and later on SupeRecord (2011)
She Wants You Unreleased live track ? Studio version?
Skinnin' And Grinnin' Unreleased live track 1998 Studio version?

Remake of an old Creepy Stick song (Creepy Stick version also remains unreleased). Subset's live version was available as MP3 on Seattle sounds website in 1998-1999

Listen on Youtube
Something Wicked (version 1) Unreleased studio track 1998 Short MP3 clip was available for download at Seattle Sounds website in 1998
Something Wicked (version 2) Unreleased studio track ? -
Theme From Below Subset Unreleased live track ? Theme that started some of the Subset shows.
We Can't Stop Us Unreleased studio track ? -
What Can I Lick? Unreleased live track ? The Feelings Hijackers later recorded this track with another name "Letters From 3am" and new lyrics. TFH version is available on their debut album "T.F.H" and SupeRecord.
What She Gave Unreleased live track ? -
What The Hell Extra Double Bonus Thrill Pack (Promo CD) ? Appeared as a bonus track on unreleased PUSA - Self titled (Extra Double Bonus Thrill Pack) promo release.

Extra Double Bonus Thrill Pack was planned to be released on 2004, but it was later replaced by Ten Year Super Bonus Anniversary Edition, which had totally different bonus tracks.

The Feelings Hijackers version is available on their debut album T.F.H