Vance Joy (James Gabriel Wanderson Keogh) is an Australian singer-songwriter. Being a musician wasn’t always the plan for Vance while he was growing up. Most of his life revolved around playing football, a sport he remained a part of even after becoming a known singer. He made his music debut on 21st January 2013 with the launch of his single ‘From Afar’. In the same year, he released his debut EP, titled ‘God Loves You When You’re Dancing’. The EP was a success and one of its singles titled ‘Riptide’ became a success on the Australian radio scene. It eventually achieved a platinum status by the ARIA. In 2014, his debut album was released by the title ‘Dream Your Life Away’. The success of the album was then followed by a mega US tour and the song still remains one of the best singles to come out of Australia in the recent times and Vance grew a solid reputation across the world.
Childhood & Early Life
Vance Joy was born on 1st December 1987 in Melbourne, Australia, into a middle class family. Like every other kid, he was also into sports and the desire to play music didn’t come to his mind until the teenage years. He started listening to heavy metal songs, particularly by Metallica, which turned out to be the genesis of his interest in music.
Making a career in music turned out to be more difficult than just learning to play guitar, so he focused on his second best interest, football, instead. Joy was the school captain during his high school days and was moving ahead towards a successful career in the game.
After he graduated high school, he got enrolled at Monash University and did his graduation in Bachelor of Arts and Bachelor of Laws. It was around this time when the idea of making a career in music popped up in his head. He started singing in local bars and clubs and gained some positive feedback, which further encouraged him to make good music of his own. He also hopped from clubs to bars and cafes in order to make a name for himself during the open mic events. At one point of time, he was a known entity in the Melbourne open mic scene.
He also had a successful run in the Australian Rules Football and played in the Victorian Football League for the Coburg Football Club and won the best player award in 2008 for his magnificent performance. Even after he became a successful musician, he kept supporting his football club.
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By the year 2013, Joy was all determined to make it as a musician going ahead he recorded and released his debut single ‘From Afar’ in January 2013, which opened to a great response. This encouraged him to start working on his debut EP ‘God Loves You When You Are Dancing’, which was released in March 2013.
The EP turned out to be a roaring success, especially among the young listeners. The second single from the EP ‘Riptide’ became sort of a national rage, leading to a great success streak on the Australian commercial radio.
The single went on achieving the sixth spot on the ARIA Singles Chart and the Australian Record Industry Association certified the song as platinum. GoPro tv ad campaign made the song their anthem for the Australian market.
The album made Joy a national star musician. In several of his interviews, he has stressed about how his approach to making music is as simple as it gets. After enjoying the roaring success of his first effort, he started focusing on the release of his debut album, which was highly awaited.
In September 2014, Joy treated his fans with his debut album, which was titled ‘Dream Your Life Away’. ‘Mess is Mine’ and ‘First Time’ from the album became popular with American and European listeners. Joy made the full out of the buzz that was created about the album and embarked on a nationwide tour.
It was followed by a US tour in October and he also played music in front of live audience for 'Taylor Swift’s 1989 World Tour' as a support act in November 2014. This further increased his popularity among the average American music-lovers.
In November 2014, he was invited to perform on his hit song ‘Riptide’ at the MTV Europe Music Awards and a year later in 2015 he was named Elvis Duran’s Artist of the Month for November.
The song ‘Riptide’ became the epitome of success for the young singer and as he expanded his horizon to a wider audience, the song topped many charts in the USA and Europeans countries such as Belgium, Germany, Austria, Slovakia, Italy and Switzerland. The song reached the top spot of the Alternative and Rock Airplay Charts and number 30 on Billboard Hot 100.
Joy was further invited to perform on the song at the Boston Calling Music Festival in 2015 and in the same year he performed the song during the Season finale of the 14th Season of ‘American Idol’. He received a standing ovation for his performance at the Dolby Theatre.
In June 2015, he released the single titled ‘Great Summer’, which he had recorded for the film ‘Paper Towns’. He also rocked at the 2015 ARIA Music Awards, where he got seven nominations to his name, and ended up winning the Best Male Artist Award for his album ‘Dream Your Life Away’.
In 2017, he was honoured with a platinum certification yet again for his single ‘Lay it on Me’ and in the same year, he announced the release date of his second album ‘Nation of Two’, which is speculated to release in February 2018.
Vance Joy’s real name is James Gabriel Wanderson Keogh and he picked easy to pronounce stage name from a novel ‘Bliss’ wherein his favourite character is named Vance Joy.
Vance Joy is very secretive about his personal life and prefers not to talk about it in public.