b. Wendel Ferraro, Montego Bay, Jamaica, West Indies. Ferraro was nicknamed Junior in his early years and, inspired by his love of jazz, added the name of his favourite musical genre to complete his moniker. His early musical influence and experience was gleaned while performing in his local church choir. He met producer Lennie Hibbert who helped the young singer to polish his musical skills, although the duo did not record together owing to Junior Jazz’s resettlement in New York, USA. On his arrival in the Bronx, Junior Jazz’s connection with Hibbert resulted in him being recruited to accompany visiting Jamaican artists including, Beres Hammond, Gregory Isaacs, Judy Mowatt and the Mighty Diamonds. While supporting the cream of Jamaica’s recording industry Junior Jazz resolved to perform in his own right and formed his own local reggae band. The group performed as the Agents although they failed to make an impression within the reggae industry. In 1991, as a soloist, Junior Jazz recorded the George Benson hit, ‘The Greatest Love Of All’, which was featured on a Japanese reggae compilation. His interpretation of the song proved especially popular in the Far East. Through to 1997 Junior Jazz developed his career by performing at the renown S.O.B.’s nightspot, where a representative of Vincent Chin invited him to record his album debut. The release resulted in him being nominated in four categories at the Tamika Reggae Awards and global touring alongside artists such as Bunny Wailer, Buju Banton, Beenie Man and Shabba Ranks. Junior Jazz’s ‘Love Is Waiting There’ was heavily promoted through black music video channels and indicated a long and illustrious career for the singer, but he appeared to be unable to maintain the momentum and drifted back into obscurity.
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