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Renegade Riddims: R4NS0M


The northeast United States has had a rich Drum & Bass pedigree since the genre first arrived on American shores. Among the richest of these local scenes has been Washington DC, from which the artist known as R4NS0M emerged. His road has been long and winding, and the journey has forged one of the immediately distinctive artists on the continent.

In the mid-1990s, the Baltimore/Washington DC metropolitan area, already flush with the sounds of Go-Go and Baltimore house, became a hotbed of rave culture. A young Harry Schrecengost had been soaking up the sounds of skate and snowboard culture, not the least of which was MTV’s 120 Minutes and Yo! MTV Raps. But it was the arrival of Jungle and Drum & Bass to the United States that really captured Harry’s passions. Ready to take the plunge as a DJ in 1997, he dubbed himself Ransom.

In addition to holding down a spot on WMUC 88.1 FM, he became a member of the Step Syndicate, the DC crew that included Wreck, Benko, Books, and MC Escher. He quickly became a regular for such seminal DC/Baltimore promoters as 2Tuff, Buzz, and Ultraworld, and cemented himself as one of the northeast’s finest DJs. He went further afield to perform at legendary U.S. Drum & Bass events including Eklektic (San Francisco), Platinum (Philadelphia), and Respect (Los Angeles). He also began his early forays into production, including ‘Broadcast’ with Corrupt Souls on Moving Shadow, and ‘Breach’ with Sinthetix and UFO! on Ohm Resistance. But the first golden age of Drum & Bass in the US was soon disrupted by the emergence of Dubstep in the late 2000s. At the same time, Harry’s affiliated production teams went their separate ways. So, he took a break from production and began a tenure as a multi-genre DJ under the Harry Ransom moniker, where he would appear at such DC venues as the U Street Music Hall and The Loft.

The 2010s were an era of change for Ransom, who undertook to develop and refine his production skills. It was during this period that he got married, had two children, and relocated to Boston, Massachusetts. He also changed his moniker to R4NS0M, a nod to his old AOL Instant Messenger handle. His return to DJing has seen him perform at events like Resonate, Cadence, and 88 Music, and a recent appearance at Boston area’s iconic Elements, and craft mixes for Winslow’s Bad Snares Anonymous, Toronto’s Prophecy FM, and Detached Audio. More recently, his production work has found its way onto labels such as Absys, Detrimental Audio, SUB:LVL, Soul Deep, Beats In Mind, Detached Audio, 1 More Thing, WiddFam, and Four Corners Music, and he’s collaborated with such artists as Fake, Dvalue, Ben Rolo and Metcalf. With decades of work under his belt, and a decidedly individual take on the Drum & Bass sound, R4NS0M continues to cement one of the more unique legacies in the history of the genre as a creator and pioneer.

Now he joins our Renegade Riddims series with an exclusively curated dark and rolling mix, which includes music from himself, Chimpo, Thematic, Klippee, Submotive, Quadrant & Iris, Zero T and loads more!

Check out the mix below and download it for free here!


R4NS0M artwork

Sum up this mix in 10 words…

Cultural exchange from the states via demos, dubplates & current selections

What’s your personal favourite track on it?

Ed:it & Creatures – “Indecisive”, looking forward to hearing these two cook up even more, plus I’ve heard collabs they’ve done separately with others. I’m a big fan of what I’m hearing.

What’s the special ingredient in this mix?

I rep quite a bit of music from friends, and they rep music from me. There’s that connection and buzz that comes from sending new music back and forth.

Tell us about your next EP?

Recently I had my debut solo EP on Four Corners Music, and I have some singles and an EP getting finished off for Seminal Sounds and Serrel Sweet Recordings, here in the States.

What have you got coming up? 

A couple of beach holidays.

Solo projects and several collabs underway with friends.

And a 160-ish mix for my friends over at Psycho Bummer.

When was the last time you actually raved?

May! I made it out to Elements in Boston a few times, caught sets by my friends Shibumi and Kiljoy, plus locals Furious, Mr. EyesLee and Lenore. Even had a little dance.

And finally, do you have a special message for our readers?

Be safe this festival season, watch out for each other, and thanks for the opportunity to share my voice in this global sound we share.


01. Chimpo – “All Of The Above (R4NS0M VIP)” (dubplate)
02. R4NS0M – “Capassity” (Four Corners Music)
03. ID – ID
04. Ed:it & Creatures – “Indecisive” (Kynetic Sound)
04. Crystal Clear – “Woke” (Sofa Sound)
05. Zero T – “Prove It” (Sofa Sound)
06. ID – ID
07. Objective – “Burnt Toast” (The Sauce Recordings)
08. Nami & Hijack MC – “Creepin'” (Overview)
09. Thematic – “It Began” (Sofa Sound)
10. R4NS0M – “Huh, What?” (Serrel Sweet dubplate)
11. Nami – “Slipstream” (Overview)
12. DLR, Script & Fokus – “Perception (R4NS0M Remix)” (dubplate)
13. ID – ID
14. BradyXK – “The Second Quiet Place” (dubplate)
15. Quadrant & Iris – “Sour Rip” (Cause 4 Concern)
16. Des McMahon – “Hard Truth” (Des McMahon Music)
17. Kiljoy – “Heart of a Lion” (Function dubplate)
18. ID – ID
19. R4NS0M – “Unseen” (??? dubplate)
20. Klippee – “Signal Jumper” (C.I.A. Records)
21. Submotive – “Rubber Arm” (The North Quarter)
22. Sam Binary & Myth – “Headrush” (Sofa Sound)
23. ID – ID
24. R4NS0M – “Mosaic” (Serrel Sweet dubplate)


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