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David Guetta

In many ways this could be David Guetta's Year Zero. That might sound ridiculous for a man who has seemingly drawn the best out of the pop and DJ world. But with his album, ' One Love', featuring superstars of the American hip-hop and r&b scene, the optimistic Frenchman claims we may very well look back on 2009 and say that this was the dawn of a new era in dance music. US urban culture has always been - Puffy excepted - pretty disdainful of dance music, but over the last 12 months Guetta has been their go-to man. Kelly Rowland discovered him when he was DJing and asked him to write a song. The same week that the Black Eyed Peas requested him for production duties on their song 'I Gotta Feeling'. Always with an eye to opening dance music up beyond its comfortable ghetto, David struck a deal - he would be involved in their albums if they repaid the favour and sang on his. 'One Love' arrived in August featuring vocals from the former Destiny's Child alongside the Peas and Akon. Apart from anything else, it gave Guetta three European No.1s and his biggest album to date. "This album was trying to build a sound bridge between hip-hop and electro," he explains from LA, before performing at the MTV Latin Awards. "I think it's going to be huge for everyone in electronic music. Everybody in America wants that sound now and I'm sure that, not only for me but for the whole dance community, it's going to be a new world. This is only the beginning." If Guetta is right, it could change the worldwide dance scene completely. For the first time American radio is playing tracks that have come - musically at least - from European club culture. Right now those tracks are Guetta's but, ever the optimist, the man who lives to break down commercial walls is convinced that this is the start, that the hip-hop world is going to come knocking at our door. "Now all the best artists want a part of it," he promises. "So it's going to be amazing for all the house music producers. I have the opportunity to work with all the artists that I've dreamt of working with all my life." But to think that David has just been about huge vocal productions and topping the charts would be to misunderstand the core of the man. While the album is sitting high in the charts, he's slipped out an underground electro track on Mark Knight's über-hip Toolroom. 'Grrrr!' is a tough instrumental monster, very much aimed at the people who love him as a DJ. "As a DJ, I play underground clubs and I play other more glamorous parties," he explains. "In Ibiza I play Pacha, but I also play Cocoon. I never wanted to choose really. It's the same for me as a producer. I can produce big pop records but I can also produce more techy and underground tracks like 'Grrrr!' I do it in exactly in the same way - with my heart and my passion." Always causing confusion, he refuses to say that just because part of him is a pop star he's only going to make big vocal hits. "I refuse to stay in a box," he says. "I have two crowds - I have some people who love me for my hits and I have some people who love me for my DJing. And they're not necessarily the same people." But as important as the underground is for him, as much as he cherishes playing chunky electrotech and as enthusiastically as he grabs the chance to play long and deep, the things that have made Guetta's year mark him out as a populist, a man who wants everyone to be as excited about the music he loves as he is himself. That's undoubtedly why he signed up to be ambassador of the new DJ Hero computer game, an offshoot of the massive Guitar Hero, that's another possible avenue to bring new feet to the dancefloor. It's also why he's got an iPhone app waiting to go any minute and how he's ended up with a million Facebook fans this year. Whether or not David Guetta's 2009 is going to change dance music forever, it's clear why he's calling it the biggest and best year of his life.