DEDE PRIEST grew up in Dallas, Texas, raised by her hard-working, young mother, who taught her how to live and dream in a world where little black girls are all too often shaped by discouraging circumstances. Instilling in her daughter the importance of a full life of experiences and opportunities, Paula Williams encouraged Dede to pursue both the challenge of higher education and the passionate fulfillment of music, in all its varieties and colors. Classically trained on the violin from age ten, Dede’s exposure to a wide and diverse cultural foundation has only enriched her life and her ability to relate her soul within her music. She loved her violin, but it was always clear that her voice was her first instrument.
From an early age, Dede would sing into her grandmother’s old vacuum, pretending that the handle was a microphone. Donning her aunt’s red lipstick and her mother’s high heels, the living room her stage, Dede would sing along to whatever she could find. It didn’t matter what kind of music it was. If it sounded good, she liked to sing it. As she became older, though, it was the rawness of Blues and Gospel that shaped her talent the most. Moving to Austin, Texas to attend the University of Texas, she earned a degree in Philosophy, then followed her heart and let the music lead.
In Austin, Texas, a thriving live-music scene rich with talented, nurturing, and highly experienced musicians, Dede began her professional singing career. These days, she has expanded her canvas, doing shows in both the USA and Europe. Brandishing Blues vocals rooted in the Texas Soul tradition, Dede has been honored by comparisons to many great vocalists, including Etta James, Aretha Franklin, Billie Holiday, Mahalia Jackson, and Willie Mae Thornton, among others. She has shared the stage with Clarence Gatemouth Brown, Leon Russell, Tommy Shannon (Double Trouble), Harry Belafonte, and others. Her stage presence and warm rapport with her audience reveals her love of her art and her need to share it. Referred to as a "Modern Day Blues Queen", Dede Priest is powerful, soulful, and emotionally intense, delivering a style that is sweetly reminiscent of the “old school”, yet new, unique, and all her own.
In 2007 her debut album “Candy Moon” was recorded, with a group of excellent Dutch musicians that all performed at major European festivals. Early 2008 the album was discovered by Amsterdam based Cool Buzz, independent label for modern blues and alternative roots. Being very impressed with the tasty brand of Blues, (Nu-)Soul with hints of Jazz and Gospel, they decided to offer a deal and “Candy Moon” will be officially released and in stores in April 2008.
Dede Priest & Band
Dede Priest - Vocals
Richard van Bergen - Guitar
Govert van der Kolm - Keys
Roelof Klijn - Bass
Jody van Ooijen - Drums