Debra Devi's self-produced debut solo album, Get Free (True Nature Records/Redeye), received raves from Vintage Guitar, Jambase, Marie Claire (Italy), Guitar International and other media for its big classic rock sound, her soulful voice and her powerful guitar playing. Thanks to representation by Prom-o-Rama in Italy, Get Free also received great reviews in Italy, and was featured on iTunes Italy's home page for two weeks.
Devi became a Fender artist, and the first female guitarist to record for Guitar World’s “Lick of the Day” app. She played festivals and club dates from Memphis to Montana.
After helping her nephew through a lengthy life-threatening health crisis, Devi has returned to the studio to produce her new Wild Little Girl EP, with drummer John Hummel, bassists Max Feinstein, Dan Grennes and Kevin Hummel; and keyboardists Rob Clores and Peter Vitalone. Music videos for the EP have premiered on The Alternate Root, American Blues Scene, Guitar Girl and The Pop Break.
Jim Testa of the Jersey Journal writes: "Debra Devi stands out among singer/songwriters as a true triple threat: a gifted songwriter, a powerful singer and an outstanding guitarist. Firmly grounded in the blues/rock tradition, Wild Little Girl mixes wistfulness with forcefulness. Every track leaves room for her organic, expansive guitar solos."
Now Devi and her seasoned band are supporting Wild Little Girl at clubs and festivals along the East Coast, opening for national acts like Devon Allman and Nikki Hall. Live, says New York Music Daily, "Devi leads a ferocious guitar-driven band equally adept at sprawling psychedelic jams and terse, soulful rockers."
In Jan 2018, Devi produced the Jersey City Rocks White Eagle Hall show, which drew 450 people and featured her band, four other JC bands, and artist Robert Piersanti.
Devi fell in love with electric guitar at seven years old when she heard the feedback on "Suzie Q" by CCR. "It was the spookiest thing I'd ever heard, and I couldn't stop listening to it," Devi recalls. Growing up in a Milwaukee suburb, however, she got the message that only boys played in bands.
When Devi saw Bonnie Raitt perform in college, though, she couldn't stifle her longing to play electric guitar anymore. Devi bought a Fender Mustang at a pawnshop and moved to NYC. She joined punk, industrial and rap/rock bands, eventually touring the US, Canada and Europe.
When Devi began to sing and write her own songs, though, her music harkened back to classic '70s rock and pop. "I love the great songs and production from that era, and the idea that a guitar solo should fit a song perfectly," she explains.
A passionate blues fan, Devi is also the author of the popular blues glossary The Language of the Blues: From Alcorub to Zuzu (foreword by Dr. John), which won the ASCAP Deems Taylor Award for outstanding book on music. The Language of the Blues is blurbed by Bonnie Raitt, Joe Bonamassa, Hal Willner, Ministry singer Al Jourgensen, Ed Sanders, Bob Margolin and Jimmy Vivino.
Devi has given her popular "Language of the Blues" talk at TedX Jersey City, A. Schwab in Memphis, Jersey City Theater Center, Luna Stage in South Orange NJ and other venues. She is interviewed about blues lingo in the films America's Blues and Mr. Handy's Blues, and by USA Today, NPR All Things Considered and BluesMobile.
A long-time yoga practitioner, Devi's favorite mantra is lokah samastah sukhino bhavantu, "may all beings everywhere be happy and free."