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From Model to Musician to Poker, Dee Dozier Hits Her Stride
Dee Dozier is easily recognizable at the poker table, even if some reporters miss her name. She is the pleasant person at the table who will happily smile while stacking your chips.
But Dozier is more than just a poker player; she is a singer, songwriter, actress, model and musician. It can be tough to figure out which she loves more: Poker, music or her dog named Gamble.
Dozier grew up in Atlanta, singing in choirs thanks to her father, and began playing the piano at the age of four. She fell in love with music and started writing her own songs.
“My senior year of high school I had more of an interest and I joined more choirs,” Dozier recalled. “I really didn’t start writing music until around 2003. I picked up the guitar, taught myself, and started trying to write music.”
Dozier Catches the Gambling Bug in Tunica
Dozier packed up her guitar for a move to Ole Miss, where she earned a degree in Liberal Arts, but also found her way to the nearby casinos.
“When I was in Mississippi, I got really big into gambling,” Dozier said. “I was driving to Tunica a couple nights a week to play blackjack and I got a lot into sports betting. I was obsessed with blackjack. I got a little bit of a gambling bug then.”
Dozier moved to Los Angeles after graduation with an eye towards acting while continuing to write music. She was on set as in extra in the movie Kiss Kiss Bang Bang when someone moved her into a bigger role. As a corpse.
“I’m the lady in the water; I’m the dead body through the whole movie!” Dozier said.
“They gave me a principle role, which I still get residuals for which are ridiculous, when all I had to do was lay there all day long,” Dozier continued. “All my scenes were with Robert (Downey Jr) and Val (Kilmer) so I got to hang out with them.”
Learned Poker in LA, Found Success in Atlantic City
Los Angeles gave Dozier more than just an acting credit; she picked up poker from her neighbors and began studying the game. But she really didn’t start playing until she moved to New York City to work as a fitness model for Target.
“When I moved to LA, I had neighbors who played poker and I started reading books about it and playing for pretend money online,” Dozier said, “Then I moved to New York and I just got into that underground poker scene really fast.”
“It taught me a lot about the game and I won my first tournament in Atlantic City,” she continued. “I played the Main Event that year at the World Series of Poker.”
The fitness model gig didn’t last long once Dozier had a taste of poker success. She quit her job, finished her record, and moved back to Los Angeles.
“When I realized how much more money there was to be made, I quit my job,” Dozier said. “The weather in New York was not for me. I’m a beach girl, I like to put my feet in the sand, hear the ocean waves, and in New York the outdoor space was just debilitating.
“I moved to Malibu this year and it fills me with so much peace.”
“I Don’t Doubt My Decisions as Much"
Dozier now spends her time making music and playing poker. She was in the recording studio with her new endeavor, yo eleven, but everything is on hold with a lineup change and her summer move to Las Vegas.
“I decided after weeks of thinking about it that artistically, if I wasn’t behind what I was putting out, I just had to start over,” Dozier said. “So I wasted some money, I lit it on fire just like a tournament buy-in.
“It’s frustrating but how great is it to be so sure of yourself; you don’t want to put something out that’s not you. I’m good with it. Starting the week after the series, I’ll go back in the studio.”
Dozier cashed in her first tournament of the summer, Event #21 $1,000 No Limit Hold’em, and had another deep run in Event #29. She continues to study the game and feels confident heading into her summer schedule of tournaments.
“I wasn’t very good at poker at all. I don’t know if I am now but I’ll say this, over seven years of playing, this is the first year where I felt confident in my game,” Dozier said.
“I don’t doubt my decisions as much as I used to. I used to not even know what a lot of things meant but playing and losing enough you really start to pick up mistakes and learn quickly.
“I’m grateful for that.”