Photo Credit: Shefik
What do Stevie Wonder, Daryl Hall, Chaka Khan, Smokey Robinson, Shirley Ceasar, and Freddie Jackson have in common? Besides each being musical icons, they have all had the opportunity to work with Janice Dempsey.
Dempsey's (a/k/a JD) beautiful voice and incredible composing talents are one of the best kept music industry secrets of her generation. Over her career, she has captured eight gold and two platinum and double platinum awards, and has charted over 20 songs with and for some of the greatest artists of our time.
Dempsey began her musical career at age four as "Little Janice, the Gospel Singing Baby", under the guidance of her late mother, The Reverend Alma Dempsey. Dempsey opened for such gospel greats like The Mighty Clouds of Joy, The 5 Blind Boys of Alabama, and Shirley Ceasar. After high school, Dempsey attended The Mannes College of Music in New York City, where she studied composition and voice. Dempsey then accepted a scholarship to The University of Bridgeport, in her home state of Connecticut, where she was the featured vocalist for the UB Jazz Band, under the direction of Dr. Neil Slater. The band recorded two albums and performed with such jazz greats as Clark Terry, George Shearing, and Edgar Winter.
During her second year at UB, Dempsey began working with the late producer/songwriter Keith Diamond (Billy Ocean, Mick Jagger) who had become familiar with Dempsey's talent a few years prior while working at CBS Records, where Dempsey had recorded a duet single with childhood friend Michael Brown, entitled "Love Talk". He hired Dempsey to sing demo tracks for an upcoming album that he was producing for Melba Moore. Dempsey (along with the soon to be legend Freddie Jackson) both signed to Hush Productions, went on to tour with Moore as background singers. Dempsey's signature vocal background style helped to create the "Hush Sound", and the events that followed would help to carve a musical career that has taken her around the world.
Dempsey has recorded three solo albums on Geffen Records, as well as "Touch Sensitive" on Epic Records, and "Thirsty" and "Pay Attention" on JDP Media. She has appeared on countless albums as a featured and background vocalist, writer, arranger, and producer in various genres of the music industry, including (and this is a partial list) Stevie Wonder, Chaka Khan, Daryl Hall, Freddie Jackson, Smokey Robinson, Mick Jagger, SWV, Michael Bolton, Keith Diamond, Danny Pickering, Paul Laurence, Meli'sa Morgan, Roberta Flack, Barbara Streisand, Linda Ronstadt, Melba Moore, Kashif, Tom Jones, Don Johnson, Nile Rogers, Danny Pickering, Rahni Song, Marlena Shaw, Marion Meadows, Michael Bolton, Gene McFadden, John Whitehead, David Ruffin, Eddie Kendrick, Dennis Edwards, Greg Howe, Jonathan Butler, Marcus Miller, Vanessa Bell Armstrong, Buddy Williams, Najee, Alex Bugnon, and most recently, with two amazing up and coming artists, Amanda Holley and Adrianna Mondelli, who will soon be released on Dempsey's and associates newly formed label, Just Entertainment Media (JEM).
"I am so thankful for my blessings and believe the best is yet to come," says Dempsey. "Thank you."
Last Updated: May 31, 2021