BY TARA JAAF// Venezuelan American singer-songwriter and visual artist, Devendra Obi
Banhart, is coming to perform at 9:30 Club in Washington D.C. this Saturday.
Before developing his career in music, Texan-born artist Devendra Banhart began his artistic
endeavors back in 1998 when he moved to California to study at the San Francisco Art Institute.
The album that brought his talent to recognition amongst soft folk listeners, Oh Me Oh My...
(2002), comprised of intimate lo-fi tape-recordings he created over several years. Impressing
everyone who could get their hands on his music, Banhart went on to create a multitude of
experimentally captivating recordings that successfully traversed multiple genres. He was able
to beautifully blend acoustic folk, psychedelia, and stream-of-consciousness lyrics to every
piece of music released. His artistry formed the cornerstone of an early 21st-century
musical aesthetic often termed “freak folk.”
I began listening to Devendra back in 2016 when I would visit my boyfriend down in Richmond
V.A. every other weekend. His roommate would wake us up in the morning with tracks from
Devendra’s 2013 record, Mala, blasting on the stereo in the living room. The amazing thing is
that somehow, I could never bring myself to be annoyed at this new, early-as-heck alarm clock.
My appreciation for Devendra’s enchanting harmonies grows stronger with every album that he
releases. From the day I heard it, ‘Saturday Night’, off the album Ape in Pink Marble, will
forever remain one of my favorite songs of all time.
I am beyond excited to see Devendra Banhart showcase his newly released album, Ma, this