Defected's Glitterbox evening with DJ Joey Negro at the St. Moritz Music Summit
Having worked under 30+ aliases over his long career, and scored several top ten hits under the name Jakatta, it's testament to the quality and influence of Dave Lee's work as Joey Negro that it remains by far his best-known pseudonym. Born in London in 1964, Lee began collecting rare disco records in the late 1970s, and was a fully paid-up expert by the time he began producing his own, heavily disco-informed house tracks in the late 1980s. The House Masters compilation of Lee's own productions and remixes that was released in January is a pretty good beginners' guide to the very best of his oeuvre. As he explains on the phone from his home in London, the 20 tracks to be found on it cater to both his own priorities and those of a more general audience.
"I recently put together a Youtube playlist of my stuff because I noticed that if you searched for me you'd really just get a lot of the more commercially successful tracks coming up," he says. "The playlist ended up being about 130 songs, so with the House Masters release I was really just trying to condense that as into as succinct a form as possible. So there are some more obscure ones there, some from my label (Z Records), some remixes, one or two that are sub-110 bpm, and so on, to try and properly represent what I've done over the years. I also put a few on that are maybe not my personal favourites now as i've heard them too many times, like my club mix of "American Dream" (the ubiquitous Jakatta track which got to number three in the UK charts in 2000), because it's important to cater to people who might not be experts on everything you've done but discover the rest via your higher-profile stuff."
Lee's latest sojourn to Switzerland will be for a show at St. Moritz's Vivai club on March 12. He explains that the set he'll play there won't be one in which he'll be consciously "touring" his House Masters record, but says it will more than likely contain a few tracks from it that he'd been playing regularly even before the record came out. "I never assume that everyone in a club has come to see me," he says, "but some will have and they're likely to want to hear some of my records, so a typical set of mine will comprise maybe 20 to 25% my own records. Aside from that I'd say about a third of my sets are usually disco - normally I like to play 2 or 3 disco records on the bounce and then switch to more electronic stuff for a while, to keep it interesting for myself and for the crowd."
Lee's set is part of the Defected Presents Glitterbox event at the second annual St. Moritz Music Summit, which runs in the glitzy resort town from March 12 to 15, taking in 12 locations and over 40 DJs. Joining Lee on the bill for Defected Presents Glitterbox will be long-standing London DJ collective and institution Horse Meat Disco and Defected boss Simon Dunmore. Other hot tickets over the event's four days are PACHA Ibiza's two events at the Kings Club and then out on the ski slopes, the Kings Of House NYC show on March 14 at the Carlton Hotel, featuring David Morales, Louie Vega and Tony Humphries, and Ministry of Sound's two parties at the extraordinary Kulm Hotel. For full details visit the event's website at http://www.musicsummit.ch/.
March 13, Vivai, Via Traunter Plazzas 6, 7500 St. Moritz, CHF 40 to 220. http://www.vivai.ch/