Oh, the audacity. How many artists can claim to have successfully re-recorded one of the classic, most recognizable albums of the modern era of music nearly note for note? Devon Gilfillian can. When that recording is his version of the complex, seminal landmark of the early-’70s, Marvin Gaye’s What’s Going On, well, that’s something amazing. Even better, the sales generate funds for low-income communities, communities of colour and education about American democracy.
The instigator of one EP and two full-length recordings, Gilfillian is not just a throwback to the ‘60s and ‘70s. He combines a thoroughly modern take on R&B, updated with the latest in production values and heavy beats, and a dripping reverence for the classics. Growing up in the Philadelphia-area obsessed with the guitar, he initially set his targets on Nashville as a picker. But, that voice intervened. If he was a wine, you might say, “I’m getting some Al Green and Curtis Mayfield with a note of Stevie Wonder on the finish.” And, those songs, mixing deep ballads with toe-tappers and butt-shakers. After establishing his presence in Music City, Gilfillian signed to Capital Records and began touring the world opening for many top-selling artists. Catch him while you can … before he becomes one of those artists himself.
Biography by Jay Nelson