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Junior Jack - Whatcha Got There, Junior-

Author: Cyclone
Sunday, 9 December 2007
Belgium’s JuniorJack, aka Vito Lucente, cracked thebigtime with ThrillMe. The single, sampling Vicky D’s’80s The Beat Is Mine, was first ahit on Ibiza’s party circuit, then a globalpop smash. On the eve on his Australian tour, 3D’s Cyclone gave him a holler. Lucente found himself in-demand for gigs with his DJpartner, Kid Creme. He released an auspicious album, Trust It, of house, electro and Latin grooves, through Defected.Robert Smith of The Cure lent his vocals to Da Hype. Indeed, Vito looked set to usher in Belgium’sequivalent to the French house movement. But, lately, he’s been surprisingly lowkey. JuniorJack’s bio stops at Trust It – andthat was 2004. However, with the producer disseminating Dare Me (Stupid Disco) at the start of the year, he’s back on thescene. Much has changed since Thrill Me.Today electro is dominant with minimal the alternative. Vito loves the(potential) scope of contemporary house. He appreciates almost all dance. “The only electronic music I don’t like is trance,” he says, predictably. Nevertheless, Lucente chastises those DJs whostick to one sub-genre. “I don’t agree with DJs who just play electro because now the crowd wants electro, or becauseelectro is the fashion, and they play electro all night,” he says. “I don’tagree with that because during the night they play so many shit tracks – justbecause it’s ‘electro’ they play.” The reluctant pop star originally comes fromsouthern Italy,moving to Belgiumin childhood. Vito launched a studio career as a teenager. He wound up at theLet’s Go production company. It was during this time he met Kid Creme. After astint in a Euro-rap combo, Vito fully embraced house. He introduced his JuniorJack handle with 1999’s My Feeling.Lucente even befriended Felix Da Housecat. They cut Everyday My Life with Dajae. Along the way, Vito devised the funky disco vehicleRoom 5, spotlighting old soul cat Oliver Cheatham. In fact, Junior Jacktook up DJing relatively late, encouraged by Kid Creme. He still considershimself primarily a producer. As such, Vito continues to DJ as a tag team withKid Creme, although they rarely socialise. Off the radar for three years, Lucente insists thathe’s been working solidly. “I will be ready with a new album at thebeginning of next year,” he says. “Now I’m actually finishing my album. I amvery excited, very happy.” He’s putting Room 5 on ice. “It was just a kind ofjoke. It was a side-project that I did. I did one album.” Vito will possibly develop another side-project – “amore underground style” – to air the countless outtakes from the forthcomingJunior Jack opus (he’s sitting on some 150). Then, Lucente jokes, he can againhave a “holiday”. WHO:Junior Jack
WHAT: Plays Famous at Home
WHEN: Saturday 15 December