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Dean Alexander writes about himself, spinning a rich (and, at times, tragic) backstory into raw, rugged roots music laced with dark humor, bright melodies, and instrumentation that splits the difference between 1970s folk-rock and modern-day Americana.
A singular character who’s as proudly left-of-center as his own songs, Alexander shines a light on his traumas and triumphs with his full-length debut, Devil Man’s Blues. Don’t mistake him for a rookie, though. He’s a time-tested survivor of Nashville’s music industry, having earned his stripes as a Gibson Guitar luthier, Lower Broadway performer, major-label artist, and A-list songwriter long before embracing his independence with Devil Man’s Blues. Released in October 2019, the album pairs Alexander with other singular solo artists of his generation — Todd Snider, Aaron Lee Tasjan, and Lillie Mae, all of whom make appearances on the album — while carving out the singer’s own signature corner of the roots-music world.
On an album filled with Americana star power, though, it’s Dean Alexander who shines the brightest. Singing with an unhurried voice and writing with a mix of humor and unfiltered honesty, he evokes icons of the past — Van Morrison, Randy Newman, Roger Miller, Nebraska-era Bruce Springsteen — with a sound that’s grounded in his own present. He’s an old soul for modern times, digging through the wreckage of a broken childhood and wild early-adulthood in order to heal longtime wounds. Vulnerable and vital, Devil Man’s Blues is the story of a man who’s learned to look back — and laugh — in order to move ahead.
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