Devi Genuone’s talent is undeniable; blending soul, jazz & reggae influences to create a signature sound. She’s got that Southern swagger and incredible pipes to match. Her flavor of hip-hop with the tinge of electronica, that ‘boom bap slap’ as she says, is timeless with no limits. Her name stands for Divinely Evolving Vibrance Infinitely Guiding Elevated NOWledge Unconditionally from the One, one light, one love. That spiritual mantra describes her music to a tee. She’s spent her life searching for that perfect rhythm, developing her craft and honing her technique, shaping the music that lives within her soul.
Devi’s had her hands on countless projects, first experiencing funk and jazz as a young child learning the way of the drum. Even then Devi’s work ethic was impressive, earning time in an analog studio at the tender age of 15, as well as State level awards for her multi-instrument original compositions. While learning to master conga, she joined the underground dance music scene in Houston, linking up with Rebel Crew and working with established musicians. She learned to freestyle while traveling the States with hip-hop Rainbow kitchen, Granola Funk. Always in pursuit of the fusion of genres and instrumentation, she joined the band Monk In Austin. This group was the first to mix live and electronic instruments with effects processors in the state of Texas. This adventure allowed her to explore her voice while perfecting her percussion skills. At the forefront of the house music scene in Houston, Devi helped launch the Groovematters project. This collective showcased Devi’s conguera skills, Karina Nistal’s sultry voice, and Sista Stroke’s brazen mixing. The trio represented for females everywhere; having fun while boasting empowerment through raw talent, making them fan favorites.
Leaving Texas, Devi made her way to Minneapolis, making the Twin Cities her home for 6 years. During that time, she joined Fallopian Gruvz, a female quintet that featured vocals on a looper, beats on her MPC 1000, congas, a didgeridoo and guitars, with occasional fire spinning. This collaboration put talented women in a positive light, encouraging females everywhere to work together and pursue their musical dreams. Even as she developed her singer emcee style in Minnesota, she continued her conga work in house music, collaborating with OneThirtyRecordings label owner Jevne and artist Chuck Love. Devi Genuone’s conga riffs can be heard on many of Jevne’s releases on the label, and the two played clubs all around Minnesota and California. Continuing work with the Groovematters project, the trio played Chicago’s Safehouse for a reunion show in 2005.
Fulfilling a lifetime dream, Devi relocated to the Bay Area where she currently resides in Oakland. She reconnected with Chuck Love, playing congas at the legendary 2nd Sundays party. She collaborated on congas with Manny Alferez (Black Pancake Records and Monarch), Victor Vega of Housepitality, Dubtribe SoundSystem, Raw-G, Ximbo, Lee Burridge, Jevne from OneThirty Recordings, Pink Mammoth, OM Records, and Aima the Dreamer just to name a few. She began doing vocal hosting, emceeing, recording and performing with several Bay Area DJs and producers. Another meeting on a dancefloor with Audio Engineer and Producer Charlie Guidry aka Hippo, culminated in the creation of the song Sell Out, as well as an ongoing collaboration. Devi formed The Colorful Kids emcee group with Illtext and Pa-chaow and producer Praktikos, an endeavor currently on hold as all are releasing solo projects. She also frequently organizes a stage on Old School Copes block at Oakland’s First Fridays, showcasing local talent including her own live band, Devi Genuone Live Project. Returning to her roots, she teamed back up with long time musical collaborator Karina Nistal. The two performed together in Hollywood for Karina’s KaRAGEous album release, after creating the Nothing Comes Easy song and video with producer/emcee Abai. Devi discovered she was sitting on a gold mine of lyrics and songs from her life experience that needed beats. She brought in Lev Berlak from The Grill Recording Studios to help finesse her upcoming album, Come Correct, due out in 2014. The album creation process and the experience from working with Lev, Charlie & Karina has taught her to see music writing in a new light, and she’s motivated and currently writing more material for her next record.
One thing is clear, Devi is a lady of many talents, a soulful sophisticated force with which to be reckoned. In 2013, out of 2300 entries, she won ‘Honorable Mention for Best Song by an Oakland Solo Artist’ for Tell Me Why at Mayhem (formerly Oaktown Music Festival), proving that hard work and perseverance pay off. Her song “Another Day” from Come Correct was nominated as a finalist in the 2014 competition. Her eclectic hodgepodge of musical stylings, coupled with her sultry voice, inspire and keep you moving. Showing no signs of slowing down, miss Devi Genuone is continually making moves, and perfecting her talent, so keep your eyes and ears open for much more from this talented songstress, conguera and all-around musician.
Come Correct Album Artwork, Complete Tracklist & Shoutouts:
photo credit: Micah Weiss