Although the club genre prides itself on keeping things au courant, many of the most prominent DJs on the international circuit have been around for ages. That makes James Zabiela, who's 27, among the younger jocks to earn full-fledged superstar status -- although he reached this level with a little help from a famous (and older) friend. A Brit by birth, he came to prominence after his mixtapes turned the heads of folks at Muzik magazine, who named him the winner of the publication's 2000 "Bedroom Bedlam" contest. After Muzik feted Zabiela again in 2001, he signed with Excession, an agency associated with Alexander Coe, better known as Sasha, whose vote of confidence helped to catapult JZ into spinning's top ranks. On his new disc, the entrancingly varied One + One, Zabiela returns the favor, using his name recognition to boost the career of Nic Fanciulli, another next-generation jock on the upswing. Watch out, old guard: The new guard is on its way.
Get the Music Newsletter
Keep your thumb on the local music scene with music features, additional online music listings and show picks. We'll also send special ticket offers and music promotions available only to our Music Newsletter subscribers.