Mushroom Jazz is a series of musical compilations by DJ Mark Farina. Originating in 1992 these were released on cassette tape, then since 1997 have been commercial CD and vinyl releases. Farina combines elements of downtempo, hip hop, jazz and R&B, French, Latin, beatmatching and mixing songs together. As with Farina's house mixes, the Mushroom Jazz series incorporates transitionary effects (such as a high pass filter) and a generally dry reverb tone.
Originally launched as a cassette series, the Mushroom Jazz tapes grew from the first Chicago run of 50 copies each on to the next stage, where 500 copies of several volumes were easily distributed and sought after.
As the acid jazz boom began, he perfected his sound and fused the newest tracks from the West Coast's jazzy, organic producers with the more urban sounds he had championed in Chicago. While the predominant musical force in San Francisco was still dark, dubby House and Wicked-style Breaks, the city embraced the downtempo movement with a healthy bunch of live bands and DJs generating the tunes.
Mark Farina, along with Patty Ryan-Smith, created the now legendary weekly Mushroom Jazz club night in San Francisco in 1992. Every Monday night the crowd slowly germinated from 100 for the first few months to 600-700 two years later. As time passed, Farina and Patty put their energies into another project, the first Mushroom Jazz interactive CD-ROM for Om Records. After a three year run, where the club had established a fanatical, cult-like following for Farina and the Mushroom Jazz sound, the club closed its doors and transformed into a CD series and accompanying tours.