A source of simmering retro-techno grooves, global-politik lyrics, and jazz-worldbeat fusion since 1992, Jamiroquai broke through in the U.S. in 1997 with its Grammy Award-winning "Virtual Insanity," thanks to the confounding appeal of the song's video (directed by Jonathan Glazer). A boatload of MTV Video Music Awards later and the band was finally seeing its Stateside sales soar with its third album, "Travelling Without Moving," and frontman Jay Kay suddenly became the poster boy for video innovation.
Kay ducked out of sight and turned his attention to recording Jamiroquai's fourth LP, "Synkronized," which finds the band in a somewhat darker-hued (yet still extra-funky) mood. For the first single, "Canned Heat," the band tapped director-of-the-moment Jonas Akerlund, who's helmed Madonna's "Ray of Light," Metallica's "Whiskey in a Jar" and "Turn the Page," and Prodigy's "Smack My Bitch Up," among others. The result is a one dizzying boogie trip indeed, even though Kay wound up sacrificing a few drops of the red stuff during the shoot.
MTV News' John Norris chatted up the be-hatted dance machine about recording "Synkronized," breaking America, the grueling "Canned Heat" shoot, and the truth about whether or not Kay's "boogie is for real."
"The next video is going to be on a bloody beach!" Kay warned. Not literally, we hope...