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James Doré
This pop singer dancer has been busting moves and grooves since the tender age of six. All that sweat is now paying off with his debut radio hit 'Shut Up And Dance'.

James Doré started off inauspiciously doing voiceovers for the Seattle School District at six years of age. He then dove into Breaking and ‘Pop-locking’ or Popping as it was originally called in Portland, Oregon as it was exploding on his neighborhood streets and in the underage clubs. Later James joined the OSU Breakers performing at football half time shows, university events and crashing fraternity parties on campus. At age 21, James began traveling all along the West coast, from Canada to So-Cal, and Hawaii performing his unique blend of street and club dance styles. While in Hawaii, James was invited to perform at the prestigious Hilton Hawaiian Village on a weekly basis impersonating Michael Jackson. James was offered opportunities in Japan and Bermuda to continue doing Michael Jackson impersonations but instead, due to a deep desire to explore and further develop his own style of dance and create his own music, turned the offers down. That was a pivotal moment in his life and since then, he has never looked back. Now James Doré is a singer, choreographer, songwriter and TV host. This radial expansion has seen him performing music, appearing in billboard ads, fitness commercials and fashion shows, while hosting a TV show called Destination TV which he also wrote and performed the theme song for. In late 2011 Doré teamed up with Producer Chris ‘Starr’ Walker the force behind Omarion's first mega hit ‘O’ in 2005. Together James and Chris created a 5 song CD titled ‘The EP', which spawned the debut radio single 'Shut Up And Dance'- a song firmly in Jame's music and dance elements. Listeners responded strongly, vaulting the single up the charts and exposing James to a wider audience. Reporter Lily Clark recently caught up with James Doré to learn more about his inspiring story, artistic motivations and plans for the future.

LILY: When When did you first discover your love of music?
JAMES: When I was a kid watching Michael Jackson on TV. Watching him kill the stage I knew it was what I wanted to do.

LILY: Your song ‘Shut Up And Dance’ is receiving a positive listener response on radio. What was your initial reaction when you first heard your song playing on the radio?
JAMES: It was something I'd dreamed about since I was a kid so it was pretty gratifying. I think it was even better hearing friends of mine tell me they heard it while they were working out at the gym or chillin at the mall. Very exciting.

LILY: What was the inspiration behind your début radio single?
JAMES: I wanted to make a song that conveyed the feeling you have when you're at a party or dance club and not a whole lot could be better...then you meet a girl who takes everything to a level you couldn't have imagined. Dancing is a passion of mine so when you meet someone who shares that passion and you just click- it's priceless.

LILY: Would you say that the mood of your other songs is in the same vein as your debut single?
JAMES: I have some material coming out soon that has a similar vibe musically but with a completely different message. It's all about doing what you love. Definitely looking forward to you hearing that! But as far as my music that's out now, I wanted to show my versatility with those songs so I went from R&B to Rock infused Pop, to EDM. I've got a few more song projects with various blends of genres and musical eras coming out as well very soon.

LILY: ow would you characterize yourself as a musician? (ex. Down-to-earth, serious, fun-loving)
JAMES: I think I'm unusual in that I love to explore new ideas and vibes by blending them. I would say I'm an optimistic, laid back musician with a tendency to push myself to the limit of my capabilities. I like inspiring others but I never want to push someone into something they're not interested in doing. I've found that to be a complete waste of time. (laughing)

LILY: Did you come from a musical background?
JAMES: My sister played piano, composed and wrote lyrics at a very early age and I would sit and watch her. Sometimes she would teach me a few chords. My uncle would come over and play bongos along with his musician friends at parties. They would get crazy with it! And my mother plays piano on occasion as well. Our home was always filled with music from Motown to classical to jazz. So that was my unorthodox musical education growing up.

LILY: What do you find most rewarding about being a musician? What do you find most challenging?
JAMES: Getting feedback from fans who enjoy my music is the best. It really hit a point for me where it wasn't about money and fame anymore and it became all about enjoying the creative process and impacting people’s lives with music that made a positive effect on people. I really believe that's what music was given to us for. So, one of the first things I do in the morning when I get up is look at my fan mail. It's a great way to start the day. If you know you’re helping improve the quality of someone's life with your music, you're automatically motivated to keep moving forward. And the creative process becomes that much more fun and meaningful. For me the most challenging aspect of being in the music industry is connecting with the right people. Once that happens things move a lot faster. It can be frustrating trying to do it all on your own. And that may be the case for some artists who are just starting out but it's nearly impossible to do it all on your own forever. Especially if you are looking for a large audience. So, finding resources to outsource to, and team players is that piece of the puzzle that makes everything possible on a larger scale. It's not that we abandon the business aspect of the industry but it allows us to concentrate more on being artists and creating music. My manager David Pots allows me to relax when it comes to consulting labels and contracts, my tour manager handles a heavy load organizing events. The band and I outsource to marketing companies so I'm not killing endless hours on social media. It's a good place to be. I still have meetings with the team and lead the vision but everyone contributes making it more powerful. And there is no way I could do all they do and still make music.

LILY: Who are your role models in music?
JAMES: There are several I hold in high regard as far as musical artistry goes. I'm one of those guys that looks everywhere, but especially to the pioneers for inspiration. Cats like Michael Jackson, Steve Wonder and Jimmy Hendricks are key people I look to for ideas and inspiration as well as just enjoying their music at face value. Other artists include The Beetles, Elton John, The Police and many others along those lines. I also enjoy artists currently on the charts right now doin’ they thang like Usher, Ne-Yo and Miguel holdin’ it down for the Pop/R&B genre. Much respect.

LILY: Describe your best most memorable performance.
JAMES: One of my favorite memories was one of my first performances. I was performing in front of around twenty thousand people and hit the moonwalk sequence where I went in circles and sideways. At the time not too many people had seen that so the crowed went completely bananas! That was the moment I really got the bug to perform live. There is really nothing like it.

LILY: Do you have a music video for your single? What can you tell us about it?
JAMES: Yes! We have two music videos- ‘See You Again’ and ‘Shut Up and Dance.’ ‘See You Again’ is an R&B joint we made to show the struggle that often happens between a couple going through rough times, and how that break up leads to longing for the other half to come back. You know, you feel like you just GOT to see them again. If at least just to say hello or make things right again by letting them know you are sorry for how you acted and are working on changing internally. Actor/Model Sheba Shaffie Price did a fantastic job of playing the love interest opposite myself and was such a professional. A very talented young lady. Watch out for her! She's working on some great movie project due for theatrical release soon. We also have ‘Shut Up and Dance’ which is a EDM music video that is all about feeling amazing, enjoying a little night life with someone you really enjoy being around on a dance floor. I had the idea to make it a continuation form where ‘See You Again’ left off. So, in the opening scene are some of the key team players involved in creating ‘See You Again’ watching the ending of the music video ‘Shut Up and Dance’ at my house. We clap and pop a bottle of champagne and give a toast to the milestone celebrating the completion of that video. And it rolls into a conversation about taking this little celebration into a full blown party. We end up at the beautiful night club International Champaign Boutique in Scottsdale, Arizona dancing and continuing the celebration with the entire crew and some new friends. My three daughters had a cameo appearance and we all just had an incredible time shooting it. We had a great cast and crew to work with- Voight Thornton with 6Mic Films, who's worked with Ray J and The Game and others, DP Raul Hernandez who's worked with Tyrese, Steve Aoki, Snoop Dog and many others. Michael Cordoza with Glasswork Media who worked with G Units Hot Rod AKA Rizzie Tool & Wig Mafia were all integral in creating the look and feel we were going for from its inception. And we worked with some of the best talent in the Phoenix Metro area including International Fashion designer Vara Ayanna, Stylist to the stars Remy Toh, Phoenix Mercury Choreographers Michael Chase and Amani Jae, Celebrity MUA LaVern Castillo, renown Hair Professionals Saskia Moot Almason's team from Saskia Salon and our beautiful female lead Fitness Model Yvette Montez. They were all amazing and so cool to work with. We also had so many acclaimed dancers and models. It was cray! Dream Team. Good times.

LILY: Thank you for taking the time to share your story with me. I wish you continued success and good luck!


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