How Did Dornik Go From Drummer To Frontman? 'Jessie Ware Made Me Do It!'
We chat to the self-styled futuristic soul man ahead of the release of his debut album...
When your music is drawing comparisons to The Weeknd, Frank Ocean, Miguel and even Michael Jackson, you're doing something right.
It's crazy to think that not too long ago Croydon-dwelling Dornik was happy as Larry drumming for Jessie Ware, but after a bit of 'Tough Love' from the singer, she pushed him into the spotlight and thank god she did!
Now, label mates with Ware, Disclosure and more, his self-titled debut album is out tomorrow so we had to get to know the singer-songwriter-producer causing a stir on the British R&B scene right now...
What pushed you to make music in the first place?
"I've got a musical family. I've got older cousins who are musicians and my parents are big music lovers, so they were always playing music around me. It pretty much happened by itself and how I started to pick it up. They were my main influence - my cousins and my parents."
You never saw yourself as a front man, what changed?
"Well Jessie [Ware], she pretty much forced me to do it in a way. She heard my stuff and was like, 'This is sick' and I got a call from her label and they were like, 'We wanna put an album out'. It literally happened by itself but I really thanked her for it.
"I'm glad that I'm actually doing it now. I always had these quiet moments when I would think it would be nice to do it one day but I never had the confidence to do it but yeah I'm glad I'm finally doing it."
Would you class Jessie as a mentor figure?
Definitely, she's like a big sister to me and on tour she would get me to sing with her on a song called 'Valentine' and that was like really good practice for me, you know building up my confidence and singing in front of people live."
What do you make of all those comparisons to Michael Jackson and The Weeknd?
"Yeah it's a big compliment! Michael Jackson is my biggest influence, he's the best, and The Weeknd, he's wicked as well so it's really, really flattering."
Forget everyone else, how would you describe your music?
"I'd describe it maybe like electronic soul...future...experimental..."
What's the weirdest description of your music you've heard?
"I wouldn't call it weird but I've had dance music or EDM and I don't hear that! Maybe because some of the sounds I use maybe that's why a couple of people have said that..."
Who's career footsteps would you most like to follow in?
"Prince, D'Angelo, yeah those guys. D'Angelo's a huge influence on me as well, he's amazing."
You're on the same label as Disclsoure, does any pressure come with being associated with artists like that?
"Nah, I mean like they're great label mates and wicked guys, really talented guys. I'm just honoured to be on the same label as them. PMR is like a family-based label so everyone's cool, and everyone supports each other."
Who's on your collab wish list?
"Kendrick Lamar. I just love his style, man. He's a great rapper, his flow... His latest album, the production and musicality on it I really love and appreciate. I think coming from me being a musician and starting out as a musician I just really appreciate stuff like that and what he's about."
What's on your iPod that people wouldn't expect?
"Meshuggah- a death metal band - really different from my music!"
Dornik's self-titled debut album is released on Friday 7th August.