An Interview with Deanna Devore

We talk gear, live performance, and her forthcoming EP with Deanne Devore

By: Jason Behrends

September 13, 2018

It was a long process but I’m pretty happy with the live sound and how similar it is to the recordings.

The Deli (TD): Your first two singles of 2018, “A Cause” & “Seven Eight”, have a fuller sound then your sophomore EP, "X Number of Days”. I know you’re always growing and developing as a musician, but how has your production approach change between 2015 and these tracks?
Deanna Devore (DD): I think the sound of my production has grown with the times. I wouldn’t say the style has changed (though it may be a touch more RnB/jazz). I’ve always gone for a blend of downtempo electronic beats with real instrumentation (pretty synths and guitars), but it definitely has matured and aligned with the sound that I had envisioned for the new music.

TD: Did the recording of these new songs bring the discovery of new, now favorite gear? Or some new lessons about the recording process?
DD: I would say one plugin I used in the new music which was a huge factor in the overall sound is Omnisphere. The synth sounds are fantastic and it opened a whole new world of sound for me. Also, I’ve been playing around with Ableton for beats and have used that with other Chicago producers as of late.

TD: You recently appeared on the debut EP from David Darrko. How did that come about and how do you approach collaborations compared to your solo work?
DD: The David Darrko track I sang additional vocals on was through his producer, Dan Zima. Dan and I have helped each other out on projects for a few years now. I enjoy doing songwriting collaborations as well…writing for other artists, and would love to delve into that side of things more since writing/producing is a big part of what I do.

TD: I recently watch the video of your performance of “A Cause” live at Schubas. I may be wrong, but the track does not sound like it was recorded with a live band. What was the process of bringing these new songs to a live audience?
DD: Yes, none of the songs were recorded with a live band. I played the parts myself. And then I had each musician in my live band learn the parts from the recordings. We tried to recreate everything live with an electronic drum pad, backing tracks from ableton, and programming synth tones for my keyboardist to play. It was a long process but I’m pretty happy with the live sound and how similar it is to the recordings.

TD: While on stage you play guitar, what do you have on your pedalboard right now and how do you use it?
DD: As for my pedal board, I have a delay pedal, looper, tremolo, phase shifter, overdrive, and a tuner on it. (Attached is a pic). Basically I’m hitting the pedals while I’m playing and singing to achieve different tones/effects. 

TD: You recently announced an upcoming tour, who is in the touring band?
DD: The touring band is Colin Drozdoff on wurlitzer and synth, Michael Downing on bass and synth, Nick Kabat on drums and electronic drum pad and Lindsey Smith on backing vocals.

TD: Are these singles building to a full-length album this year? If so, when can fans expect the album and/or more great singles?
DD: These singles are off my forthcoming EP. There is one more single dropping mid-September and the whole EP will be coming out at the end of September.