When the French musician Ludovic Navarre, who works under the name St Germain, originally released the Tourist album in 2000, “Sure Thing” was immediately a favorite. It wove together samples — including shivers of guitar from the legendary John Lee Hooker’s “Harry’s Philosophy” and the gently funky march of 100% Pure Poison’s “Windy C” — to create a dapper, strutting spin on the blues.
Veteran DJ-producer Osunlade, whose “Yoruba Soul remix” stamp has served as a guarantee of a twirling dancefloor experience for more than two decades, tackled “Sure Thing” as part of a Tourist 20th anniversary project released earlier this year. If St Germain’s original sometimes feels too gentle, dangerously close to background music, Osunlade’s version ensures listeners snap to attention by bringing percussion to the foreground — a relentless kick-splat pattern — along with a handsome chime on piano that brightens the melody. Hooker’s sampled vocals, smudged around the edges, billow through the track, somehow sounding simultaneously reverential and unruly.
Osunlade was just one producer who reworked St. Germain on Tourist (20th Anniversary Travel Versions); others include Ron Trent, Atjazz, Julian Gomes, and Nightmares on Wax. Navarre also tried reimagining his own work, nodding to the burgeoning South African genre amapiano on a new rendition of “So Flute.”