"When I was younger I was always listening to Stevie Wonder and Donnie Hathaway, singers like that," says Dante. "I had this friend who was also into music. One day he told me: 'You want to sing like those cats? Go listen to what they listen to. Then you'll be a singer!" Born in Salt Lake City, Utah, Dante bought a bus ticket to New York City soon after graduating high school to pursue his dream.
"I didn't know anybody. I slept in the bus station my first night there." But New York was also a wake-up call for the aspiring singer. "I made progress, then I'd find I was losing myself a bit." He eventually made his way back to Utah. "I was thinking about giving it all up.
You know, getting an electrician's job like all my friends." "I went back for one more try. I decided to take my demo around again. One night I went to the New York recording studio, The Hit Factory. Pras happened to be there.
He was with Vada Nobles. I knew I had to get him to listen to the tape." Pras promised he'd listen to the demo when he returned, and Dante's patience finally paid off. "He said he wanted to do something together, and for me to call his assistant about making a time to meet. But this was my moment, and you never know what could happen if you let a chance slip away.
I knew I couldn't let the opportunity pass." Dante auditioned live, right then and there, causing a duly impressed Pras to begin working with the dedicated vocalist that same evening. It's that same undeniable intensity possessed by Thomas that has made European and American audiences respond so positively to the Salt Lake City native. An extended trip through Europe this past May and June to promote Fly opened his eyes to the passion of overseas fans. "I just felt really good being able to go over there and give them my all," says Dante. "I was able to give people an honest glimpse of myself and their reaction was incredible." Acclaim from the international press also helped fuel the buzz about Thomas here in the U.S.
Said Germany's Yam: "Dante's soft and laidback voice_goes hand in hand with unbeatable beats." Lycos.de also declared the singer a star: "The wonder voice from Utah is sure to be our hero_.", and Bild raved: "A perfect mixture of soul, pop and R&B, just hot..." Dante, however, has a kept a cool head throughout the incredible ride that Fly has enjoyed. "I have always believed that no matter where you end up, you have got to be true to yourself. I could still be in Utah. Everyone would be saying: 'Dante is a good church singer.' And that would be all right with me too." Read more on Last.fm.
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