At the start of the school day, you can find Damoyee Janai Neroes walking through the halls of Coble Middle School on her way to honors band rehearsal. She may seem a bit reserved at first, but the 14-year-old has no problem letting her voice be heard loud and clear when it comes to music.
“I started playing the piano when I was two,” said Neroes. “I discovered my passion for singing when I was eight or nine, and then I joined band to play the clarinet in the sixth grade.”
And it’s that passion for music that led her to compete in the Bringin’ Down the House contest. The program, sponsored by House of Blues Music Forward Foundation, allows artists between the ages of 13 and 19 to gain exposure and more stage experience by getting a chance to perform on the legendary House of Blues stage.
The odds were not in Neroes’ favor. Only six aspiring artists would be chosen from the Dallas area, and a total of 4,000 teens entered the contest.
But Neroes, who goes by Damoyee Janai when performing, said she thought she had a chance. She submitted one of her original songs titled Dreaming with You, and a few weeks later, she received the email she was waiting for.
“I got the email and I didn’t know what to think or what it meant, so I let my mom read it. She started screaming and said, ‘It means you won!,”’ said Neroes.
Neroes’ performance will be at 7 p.m. on Monday, April 6, 2015 at The House of Blues Dallas. Admission is free.
“I’m nervous, but I know I can do it,” she said.
The musician didn’t hesitate to spread the good news. She invited all of her family, friends, and even her band director— who said this is a well-served opportunity for Neroes.
“Damoyee is a leader by example,” said Stephanie Bonebrake, Coble Middle School band director, “She is the epitome of a well-rounded student who balances extra-curricular activities while still excelling in advanced academic classes.”
Neroes has big dreams for her future. She plans to attend The Julliard School in New York and be signed to a record label by the time she graduates.