Emmy / MTV Award Winner Jeremy Shada Releases New Single “Dancing With Strangers”
EMMY AND MTV AWARD WINNER JEREMY SHADA FUSES POP MUSIC’S GREATEST ERAS TO REDEFINE ROMANCE IN THE MODERN AGE
NEW SINGLE “DANCING WITH STRANGERS” OUT NOW — LISTEN
“Get ready to see—or actually hear—a whole new side of Jeremy Shada…The actor/musician trades his edgier past for a more romantic present with the anti-hookup-culture song that blends modern and vintage sounds.” — ENTERTAINMENT WEEKLY
Introducing Jeremy Shada—the bi-coastal Emmy and MTV Award winning actor and musician most notable for his work as Reggie Peters in Netflix’s Julie and the Phantoms, the voice of Finn the Human in Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time, and previously the bassist of pop-punk act Make Out Monday, just to name a few. On his new independent endeavor, the 24-year-old talent explores an array of soundscapes from the greatest eras of popular music by-way-of autobiographical vignettes. Tapping Zack Odom and Kenneth Mount as his right-hand collaborators, Shada now shares his new single “Dancing With Strangers”—an anti-hookup culture bop filled with Phil Collins-esque ‘80s drum beats and an electrifying guitar solo that’ll inspire you to find love again.
On “Dancing With Strangers,” Jeremy Shada looks deep into his psyche as he examines the societal pressures around dating in your 20s. He explains, “The song is really about a personal low point of being caught up in modern culture and realizing that you need to go back to your roots. It’s about experiencing all of the things that you think are going to make you happy and figuring out that they don’t. The romantic element is about going through a string of failed relationships and looking for love in the wrong people. But the crux of the song is that in order to find the right person, you need to become the right person yourself.”
Further, Shada adds, “I wanted it to sound like a modern-day version of an ‘80s song. Obviously, the guitar solo hits that over the head but I really like the Phil Collins-sounding drums mixed with electronic pads over the top. I wanted the tempo to have space in the verses but be very upbeat during the chorus to really sell the mood of feeling like you’re hearing a song that could be playing in a nightclub, that highlights the mood you may be in when you’re lost.”
Writing his own music always seemed out of reach. It wasn’t until he took part in a writing camp for Netflix’s now-Emmy-award-winning Julie and the Phantoms, in which he secured the lead role of Reggie Peters in 2019 that he realized he not only had a natural knack for writing, but an intense love for it as well. “As an actor, I am happy to be a faithful soldier,” he states plainly. “I enjoy being able to bring other people’s stories to life. But once I started writing music, I realized this was my way of getting to tell the stories that I wanted to tell.”
“It was so fun getting to write for a show but at the same time, you’re in the box of what needs to be written for that scene or for that specific performance or character,” Shada tells Entertainment Weekly. “In my free time when I was on the show, I just started writing my own things. I released the first song by itself as like a happy birthday song for my wife and I really didn’t have a plan on doing a lot more until that got a huge fan response. People really took to it.”
This realization led to the creation and release of Jeremy Shada’s first solo musical project at the end of 2020—a sweet, stripped-back track titled “Ballerina,” dedicated to his beloved wife Carolynn and a four-track EP called Mad Love, which weaves in and out of the many sub-genres under the pop umbrella. This subtle genre experimentation was intentional for Shada, deliberately testing the waters to see which direction was both the most well-received and the one he found himself the most drawn to as he pondered the lane in which he wanted to take his artistry. Among the tens of millions of streams, millions of YouTube and TikTok views, thousands of TikTok creator and user-generated playlist adds, and inclusion on Spotify’s New Music Friday Canada, one track on the EP stood out among the others, “Uh Oh”—a slinky, dark number with a driving big band and orchestral sound reminiscent of the 1940s. This excited Shada, and he knew exactly where he was going next.
Looking back now, the midwestern native and bi-coastal Los Angeles / South Florida resident, defines the intersection of performing arts. Inspired by his older brother to step into the acting space, Jeremy Shada quickly embraced his theatrical side, securing commercials, live action gigs, and voice acting. Though he has amassed great success in this space through roles in Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time, Incredible Crew, and Netflix’s Julie and the Phantoms, his passion for performance surpasses the camera. Having grown up with a family of huge music fanatics, Shada was always surrounded by musical influences, some of his favorites being Justin Timberlake, Fall Out Boy, and My Chemical Romance. He embraced mastering musical instruments from a young age, learning guitar, piano, bass, and vocals. In 2014, he and his brother started the pop punk band Make Out Monday, in which they self-released their EP Kicking Cars. Fusing his two worlds of voice work, theatrical, and music, Shada and the band frequently performed at Comic Con events he’d be invited to for his work in Adventure Time. This quickly escalated their live resume, performing at the House of Blues in San Diego, San Diego Comic-Con, Atlantic City Boardwalk Con, Supanova Comic-Con, and Asia POP Comic Con.
As someone whose voice is known and adored by millions, the forthcoming body of work is Jeremy Shada’s step, or leap rather, into his most authentic self and an inspiration for others to actively be the main character in their story.
(single art: Bernardo Noguiera
Winner of the MTV Movie & TV Award for Best Musical Moment; the Emmy for Outstanding Original Song, Outstanding Multiple Camera Drama or Fiction, and Outstanding Costume Design/Styling for a Drama or Fiction; and more (Netflix’s Julie and the Phantoms)
Winner of the Emmy for Outstanding Animated Program, Outstanding Individual Achievement in Animation (x5), Outstanding Short Form Animated Program (x2); BAFTA Best International (x2); BTVA Best Male Vocal Performance (x3), Best Male Lead Vocal Performance in a Television Series, Best Vocal Ensemble in a Television Series; IGN Best TV Animated Series; and more (Cartoon Network’s Adventure Time)