No, he wasn’t born and raised in South Detroit, but the native Canadian did start working in Windsor, Ontario in 1999 before moving to Detroit in 2001 to continue his music career. Marc Dorian is a keyboardist, singer, and songwriter who has always known he wanted to be a musician and found his way to making a living in the music business by taking time to learn the “why” even as he was perfecting the “how.”
The youngest of 5 children in a tight knit family from Nova Scotia, Dorian started piano lessons when he was 10 years old and just kept going from there. One thing his parents insisted upon was that their children had music lessons of some sort. He studied jazz piano at university and dug into different genres and the history behind musical styles. This love of music and desire to learn more broadened Dorian’s own taste and still guides his writing and playing.
Dorian started out in bands that were mostly blues/rock oriented and recalls being turned on to assorted pioneers of blues piano, as well as really hearing the keyboard parts on early records by country artist Vince Gill; both of which might have gone unnoticed if his more seasoned bandmates hadn’t suggested them. Billy Joel, Bruce Hornsby, and Elton John were all artists Dorian heard in heavy rotation during his formative years, their style and talent making a mark on him as well.
It was those influences combined with a strong desire to make a career of music that led him to explore many opportunities, including a three month stint in Norway as a piano bar entertainer and working on cruise ships overseas. Dorian honed his crowd skills between 1999-2012 working as part of a dueling piano outfit, traveling from coast to coast across the United States. Performing comes naturally to the friendly musician and audiences remember his engaging smile and banter nearly as much as his skill on the keys.
A reputation as a seasoned professional who always shows up prepared to give his best performance has taken Dorian to numerous high profile events in a variety of settings. He has toured with country artists and played corporate events supporting national recording artists such as Sheryl Crow, Peter Frampton, Foreigner, and Huey Lewis & The News at venues ranging from the North American International Auto Show to Super Bowl XLVI.
Dorian currently earns his living by playing keys and singing at over 100 shows per year with the tribute band Your Generation In Concert. Just because he is part of a band doesn’t mean there isn’t more to Marc Dorian the solo artist, however. As a young man in Nova Scotia, Dorian was exposed to two fellow Canadian artists who both released solo projects and were well-known as members of bands. Burton Cummings (The Guess Who) and Lawrence Gowan (Styx) both put out live records that were just vocals and piano, giving Dorian the impetus needed to continue pursuing his career path as a pianist.
His solo work encapsulates everything he has admired and learned from artists in various genres. It can be described as rootsy, adult pop; similar to Keith Urban with a piano instead of a guitar. Dorian’s latest release “Today And Always (I Do)” tells a love story to his wife on their wedding day with his lyrics. The song is reminiscent of the country crossover ballads of the mid 1990’s and pays homage to things we all hold dear in life – love, home, and family. That shared connection with the audience is only one of his many talents, but it is one Dorian excels at, putting his musical stamp on the story and then passing it along for others to interpret as he continues on his own journey.