Thriving deep in the heart of the east coast music scene, Toronto is the place Devon Cuddy calls home. His roots run deep within the industry, with influences like Townes Van Zandt, Guy Clark, Steve Earl and James Booker, he is making his own mark with a blues sound that fills you up with goodness and keeps you coming back for more. Get to know Canada’s own Devin Cuddy Band.
Name: Devin Cuddy
Where are you writing this: In the van on the way to a show
Home is where your story begins please tell us about yours.
I was born and raised in Toronto and its been a good home to me, no plans to leave. Right now I live at the Cameron House in the apartments above the bar, great community feeling up there.
Its also a great spot to meet great artists of all sorts.
Best describe your musical style.
We draw mostly from country and New Orleans Blues. Its been a challenge to blend the 2 into a cohesive sound and genre, the battle continues. Artists I like (love!) include Professor Longhair, James Booker, Steve Earle, Townes Van Zandt and Guy Clark.
When did you ‘know’ music was going to be such a big part of your life?
When I started enjoying piano lessons around 15. I was not however, sold on being a performer, that came later around 22 or so, when I started playing shows. I first started at the Cameron House playing solo and it started from that.
What would you like us to know about the album ‘Kitchen Knife’?
Its a continuation of our sound and my song writing style. The record has a bit more stuff on it then the last, Organ, wurlitzer, lots more percussion and more guitars. I think our style is a little more realised and I’m hoping that will come across to the listener.
How have you grown musically since you started performing?
I think I’ve developed more confidence in my playing and singing. The more you perform the more it comes together, songwriting gets stronger and the band starts to sound pretty hot.
Tell us about the creative process in the making of your new video ‘Kitchen Knife’.
We had done a show with the regent park school of music choir and really liked them and the sounds it added so we asked them if they would do a live video. It was really fun and they do great work at RPSM, music education for everyone is very important.
What is the best piece of advice your father has given to you as a musician?
Always be nice, its now our band motto.
Shout out to your favorite band or artist at the moment.
Timber Timbre has been playing in my ears a lot these days.
When not making music what might we find you doing?
I really like playing hockey. Probably my favourite pastime. You’ll find me at the odd Jays game too.
Something your fans would be surprised to learn about you.
I was a trumpet player for 7 years in the middle school and high school symphonic bands. I thought for a while that I would be a trumpet player but it wasn’t in the cards.
The greatest book ever written is…
Well I don’t know if its the greatest but I really liked In Cold Blood.
My all time favorite movie is…
Annie Hall, watched it twice in a row the first time I saw it.
Your dream marquee would read…
Randy Newman featuring the Devin Cuddy Band
Your most memorable musical moment thus far…
Backing up Fred Penner at a party, a guy I watched a lot as a child. Wonderful musician and guy, we were giddy.
Devin Cuddy Band is hosting a dinner party!
Whats on the menu?
Classic italian, salad, pasta, meat.
Which album is on replay?
Oscar Peterson live in Stratford. Fantastic live record.
Guests past or present that would make for stimulating conversation.
I think I’d want Christopher Hitchens and Richard Dawkins, that would be an interesting meal.
When things get dull, how would you breathe life back into the party.
Aside from communication what is the one thing you can not live without on the road?
A pillow for the van, very key item.
What is the glue that holds Devin Cuddy Band together?
Zach Sutton the drummer and old style Pilsner
Is there one quote or piece of advice that always goes with you?
I don’t really carry around a phrase that I live by but one that I use a lot is always be nice.
True love is…
Hard to find, but out there, its a journey not a destination.
What can we look forward to with Devin Cuddy Band over the coming year?
We’ll be touring our record as far and wide as it will take us.