Dean Ray

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Dean Ray

Dean Ray has had a great day, actually, he’s had a great year. But for today, Dean got to get close and personal with a fan (and some dolphins) as part of a Starlight Foundation Wish.
“It was fantastic man, really really cool,” Dean says, still beaming from the day.
“We went to SeaWorld, wandered around there for a bit and got to know each other – she was just a cute kid. We took a limo there which was cool and we watched the dolphin show and got to meet some of them after.”
From patting dolphins to now relaxing 22 floors up in his hotel room in the Gold Coast, it’s not normally how things are for the young musician, who has dedicated the year to seeing as many of his fans as possible in as many live shows he can.
“I have no idea how many people I’ve played to but I’ve done more than 80 shows and that’s not including any guest appearances or walk up performances, like I did with Megan Washington,” he says.
“I’ve always been a traveller so I kind of prefer it, I don’t like to do the whole fly in do one show and then fly out. I like to fly in get a hire car, drive around the whole area and do a few shows. That’s the best way to do it.”
Spending time away from home in foreign hotel rooms is a realistic part of being a touring musician, and while it may also be a burden for many, Dean sees the process as a means of discovering just what ‘home’ means to him.
“I’m still trying to figure out whether home is a place or if it’s more of an idea, or something you create, I don’t know, what is it?” he says.
“I feel comfortable on stage and travelling and I feel comfortable at my home in Melbourne – which I’m never at. But is that home, I don’t know? We’ve got to figure that out, and I think a lot of artists go through that stage when they leave home. I left home and I considered my parents place home but then they got divorced and moved houses I thought, ‘Well I don’t really know what home is’.”
Dean still finds time for solace on the road, mostly in the familiar faces in the crowd – some of which follow him on a run of 20-30 shows. Even finding fans in the most unexpected of places is a joy.
“I was in a prison recently and I went there and I had these inmates, these hard looking guys want my audience and stuff. That to me proved that the demographic was far more than I ever thought it was,” he says.
It seems everywhere Dean goes there’s an eclectic bunch of fans. His music has no defining age or ‘type’ that’d be into his music, and unsurprisingly there’s a cluster of Dean Ray fans in Geelong as well.
“Last time I played at the Gateway it was absolutely wild, it was so much fun so I’m looking forward to coming back. It was a good vibe, no, it was a great vibe. The stage got mobbed at the end, there were people yelling out extremely hilarious stuff all night and it was a really appreciate responsive crowd,” he says.
Written by Amanda Sherring
When & Where: Gateway Hotel, Geelong – September 19