Country and Soul artist James Dupre grew up in small town Louisiana (Bayou Chicot to be exact). As a kid he became fascinated with the weather after Hurricane Andrew hit Louisiana, and wanted to grow up to be a weatherman. It wasn’t until college where James learned to play guitar and decided to put the weather on the backburner. He then left college to become a paramedic, and started recording covers in his kitchen, and uploading them to YouTube.
He credits his parents in having good taste in music and introducing him to great country artists growing up, such as Randy Travis and Vince Gill. Dupre admits he’s had a love for music his entire life but didn’t think it was a practical dream.
He confesses to being real shy as a kid, wouldn’t even sing in front of his family. James recalls hiding in his bedroom where he taught himself to play the keyboard. His only public musical showing was playing saxaphone in high school band. “It was something I didn’t really share with anybody until I came out of my shell in college.” James is thankful that music has helped him in that aspect as well.
In 2010, after only a few years of releasing YouTube covers and gaining a following one of the videos caught the attention of a producer from the Ellen Degeneress show. Ellen liked what she heard and invited him to fly out and perform on her show. “I’d never been on local tv let alone national. It was a bit of a whirlwind. It was at that time I realized music was more than just a hobby.” He credits the show as the moment that launched his career and will be forever grateful to Ellen for the opportunity.
For Dupre that was the beginning of something more. Deciding to pursue music full time, he moved to Nashville in 2011 and loves the hometown feel of the city. His music continued to grow from there and he was offered a deal at Warner Music. After four years at the label where ultimately, no music was released he left. It was then that a friend at Warner suggested he audition for The Voice. At a point where James was feeling uncertain of what direction to turn he decided to go for it, and wound up making it onto Season 9 of the show. “I’m so glad I took a chance and did it. It was one of the most amazing experiences of my life being on that show.”
Dupre just released a new single titled “Hurt Good”. Upon leaving the Voice he was eager to put out new music, and got to work in the studio recording. They were looking for one final cut and got pitched this song, which was written by a few of his favorite songwriters in Nashville (Jesse Alexander and Travis Meadows). It’s currently climbing the Music Row Charts and James couldn’t be more excited about the positive feedback radio and fans have given the single.
What’s next on the agenda for this independent artist? Touring, touring, touring. He’s performing in London for the first time and totally stoked about that. In additon Dupre will be playing at numerous county fairs and festivals, promoting the new single. He’s hoping to get back into the studio before the end of the year to work on the next EP.
For more on James Dupree and to see where you can catch him live check out his website at www.jamesdupre.com