DNCE in Bangkok, 2017
|Origin||Los Angeles, California, U.S.|
|Years active||2015–present |
|Associated acts||Semi Precious Weapons, Jonas Brothers|
DNCE is an American dance-rock band. The group consists of vocalist Joe Jonas, drummer Jack Lawless, bassist and keyboardist Cole Whittle, and the guitaristt JinJoo Lee. The group signed with Republic Records, who released their debut single, "Cake by the Ocean", in September 2015. The song reached the top 10 on several charts, including on the US Billboard Hot 100, where it peaked at No. 9. Their debut extended play, Swaay, was released about a month later. Their self-titled debut studio album was released in November 2016. They were also nominated for Favorite New Artist for the 2016 Kids' Choice Awards and Best Song to Lip Sync and Best Anthem for the 2016 Radio Disney Music Awards. The group performed at the 2017 Fashion Meets Music Festival. Following the reunion of the Jonas Brothers in 2019, the group has entered an indefinite hiatus.
2015–2016: Breakthrough with SWAAY
Joe Jonas originally rose to fame as a member of the rock trio the Jonas Brothers, alongside his brothers Nick and Kevin. Both Lee and Lawless were, for varying tenures, a part of the Jonas Brothers' live backing band, playing guitar and drums respectively. The idea for DNCE first came about while Jonas and Lawless were living together, although the project was put on hold due to the duo's respective busy schedules. Jonas, Lawless, and Lee officially came together to form DNCE in 2015, with work on their debut studio album beginning shortly afterwards. Though work on the project had already begun, the group struggled to find a fourth member to fit into the band. Jonas began working with songwriter Justin Tranter for DNCE's debut studio album. This led to Jonas and Whittle, the former bassist in Tranter's band Semi Precious Weapons, becoming friends. Ultimately, Whittle was added as a full-time member of the group. The group named themselves DNCE after the name of a song written for the album, which lyrically spoke of being too drunk to spell the word "dance". Jonas later added that the group decided on the name as it described the "imperfect awesome[ness] of the four of [them] together." Lee later added that "much like the spelling of the word, you don't have to be a perfect dancer to dance in life." The group began performing secret shows in New York City to rehearse for their upcoming tour and promotional performances. DNCE made an official Instagram account in September 2015; Joe later posted a teaser video for the band on his account, tagging the band's official page, on September 10.
The group released their debut single, "Cake by the Ocean", on September 18, 2015. Though starting out slow, the song managed to reach the top 10 across several charts. The song peaked at number 9 on the Billboard Hot 100, and at number 7 on the Canadian Hot 100. The group released their debut extended play, Swaay, on October 23, 2015. The four-track album received a favorable review by Entertainment Weekly, writing that it "splits the difference between [Joe's] former band’s slick power pop and the electro-kissed pop stylings of his solo album." The band embarked on a fourteen-date tour in November 2015, known as the Greatest Tour Ever. All fourteen scheduled dates for the tour sold out. The tour received critical praise, and featured unreleased songs as well as covers of older classics.
On January 31, 2016, DNCE made a cameo during Fox's television special Grease: Live; a live production of the Broadway musical Grease. The band performed as Johnny Casino and The Gamblers during a high school dance scene, which incorporated a 1950s-inspired rendition of "Cake by the Ocean" and a cover of The Crickets' "Maybe Baby" alongside the Grease songs "Born to Hand Jive" and "Rock & Roll Is Here to Stay". In an interview with Rolling Stone, Jonas explained that DNCE was approached by the producers of the special following a show in New York City, and that he had always been a fan of Grease.
2016–present: DNCE, Kissing Strangers, Dance, People to People, and hiatus
To start out 2018, the group released the single, "Dance" on January 26. On June 15, DNCE released the 4 song EP People To People that contained the songs "TV in the Morning", "Still Good", "Lose My Cool", and "Man On Fire".
With both Jonas and Lawless having resumed work with the Jonas Brothers, DNCE is currently on hiatus. The Jonas Brothers have since incorporated "Cake By the Ocean" into their live set.
On 16 August 2017, DNCE and Welsh singer Bonnie Tyler performed the long version of her 1983 chart-topping hit "Total Eclipse Of The Heart" aboard the MS Oasis of the Seas during the total solar eclipse.
Band member Cole Whittle has said that "Musically, we sound like disco funk hits played by a good garage band." The band's influences include the Electric Light Orchestra, Sly and the Family Stone, Weezer, Earth, Wind & Fire, Hall & Oates, Prince, the Bee Gees, and Led Zeppelin.
- Joe Jonas: lead vocals – Jonas first rose to prominence as the leader and frontman of the Jonas Brothers, a pop band that had considerable success across music, film and television.
- Cole Whittle: bass guitar, keyboards, backing vocals – Whittle rose to fame as the bassist for Semi Precious Weapons. The band released three studio albums during their run, with their final release coming in 2014. He has also recently contributed as a songwriter, alongside fellow Semi Precious Weapons member Justin Tranter.
- JinJoo Lee: guitar, backing vocals – Lee is from South Korea and, like Lawless, has previously toured with acts such as the Jonas Brothers, playing the guitar. She was a member of CeeLo Green's touring band from 2010 to 2011, and later worked with JoJo and Charli XCX.
- Jack Lawless: drums, percussion, backing vocals – Jack Lawless played drums for the Jonas Brothers from their Marvelous Party Tour (2007) until their disbandment, and again from their 2019 reunion onwards. Lawless and Jonas were roommates, with Lawless continuing to perform with the band on subsequent tours. In 2010, Lawless became the drummer for alternative rock band Ocean Grove; the group released their debut extended play in 2011.
- DNCE (2016)
|2016||Grease: Live||Johnny Casino and the Gamblers||Television special|
Awards and nominations
|2016||American Music Awards||Favorite Pop/Rock Band/Duo/Group||DNCE||Nominated|
|New Artist of the Year||DNCE||Nominated|
|Kids' Choice Awards||Favorite New Artist||DNCE||Nominated|
|Radio Disney Music Awards||Best Anthem||"Cake by the Ocean"||Nominated|
|Best New Artist||DNCE||Nominated|
|Best Song to Lip Sync||"Cake by the Ocean"||Nominated|
|MTV Europe Music Awards||Best New Act||DNCE||Nominated|
|Best Push Act||DNCE||Won|
|MTV Video Music Awards||Best New Artist||DNCE||Won|
|MTV Video Music Awards Japan||International New Artist||DNCE||Won|
|Teen Choice Awards||Choice Music: Breakout Artist||DNCE||Nominated|
|Choice Music: Group||DNCE||Nominated|
|Choice Music: Party Song||"Cake by the Ocean"||Won|
|Choice Music Single: Group||"Cake by the Ocean"||Nominated|
|Choice Summer Music Star: Group||DNCE||Nominated|
|2017||iHeartRadio Music Awards||Best Cover Song||"Hands to Myself"||Nominated|
|Best Duo/Group of the Year||DNCE||Nominated|
|People's Choice Awards||Favorite Breakout Artist||DNCE||Nominated|
|Radio Disney Music Awards||Song of the Year||"Cake by the Ocean"||Nominated|
|Best Song to Lip Sync To||Nominated|
|Breakout Artist of the Year||DNCE||Nominated|
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