A Radio 1 Panel made up of the Friday Night Dance Show producers have debated and argued their way to a shortlist of the following fifteen two-hour mixes. All mixes broadcast between January 1st and December 10th 2011 were up for consideration.
Picking out fifteen was a near-on impossible task. The standards were high in 2011!
In the end, the shortlisted mixes were the ones that made maximum use of ttwo hours of air time, taking the listener on a creative, flowing, coherent musical journey from start to finish.
The most popular mix will be broadcast in full at 3am on 24th December.
Good luck choosing a winner!
Above & Beyond Former Essential Mix Of The Year winners returned with an emotional therapy session, making clever use of spoken word to tell a story.
Beardyman Utterly unique. Beardyman recorded this mix using only a keyboard, an effects pad and a microphone. No records or CDs or MP3s! Check out the video on the Essential Mix page.
Brookes Brothers A high octane mix which crammed in over 100 tunes and almost as many genres!
Carl Craig A seamless journey through deep house and techno from the second wave Detroit innovator. Completely classic.
Dimitri From Paris A funk & disco fuelled mix which set old school classics against contemporary tracks in a coherent vibrant mix.
Eats Everything at In:Motion Recording your first Essential Mix in front of your hometown crowd could be daunting. Eats Everything breezed through it mixing up a tight-as two hours of Bristol Bass.
Eric Prydz at Creamfields Apparently Eric didn't know his set was being recorded for the Essential Mix until just before he went on stage. No matter. As expected, it was epic.
Jamie XX A mix filled with personality. He'd already served up a classic 6 Mix for 6 Music. Dare we say he went one better on this Essential Mix?
Joker The second Bristolian to make the shortlist. Joker's debut was all about grinding bass and effortlessly flowed through dubstep, house and d&b.
Julio Bashmore And the third Bristolian! There really was somethin in the South West water in 2011! Bashmore's debut was an all vinyl affair joining the dots between classic UKG with future facing Bristol Bass.
Kaskade An epic, melodic, uplifting big room mix from America's superstar DJ.
Maya Jane Coles One of the stars of the year served up one of the most train-spotted mixes of the year crammed full of (at the time) unreleased goodies. The mix bounces and flows effortlessly through two hours.
Pete Tong 20 As part of a night to celebrate 20 years of broadcasting on Radio 1, Pete put together a very special mix of classics and hidden gems from twenty years of DJing. He pulled off a spectacular musical journey.
SBTRKT A mix that encapsulates the the sound of 2011 from one of the artists of the year. Packed full of exclusive and never heard before tracks.
Seth Troxler Funky, sexy and bouncing. Troxler recorded this mix live in one take in Jamie Jones living room. We wished we were there!
You can vote here
Huw Owen is Executive Producer for BBC Radio 1's Essential Mix