Update 7/23/2015 – At the request of the artist, I have removed all the MP3 files and images.
Way back in 2004 I had the pleasure of finding several copies of an unusual and oddly compelling CD entitled Six Petals. The artist responsible for the album, Leah Devorah, has remained somewhat of a mystery. I’ve been able to find bits and pieces of information, but every lead that at first looked promising has lead to frustrating dead ends.
Recently though, there have been a couple of pleasant developments that shed new light on the whereabouts and activities of Ms. Clemmons.
First, fellow Devora fan and friend of the Orphanage Gregg Turkington was able to determine that Devora is still actively making music. It looks like she has relocated from Florida to Los Angeles, and is now using the pseudonym Leah Devorah. Mr. Turkington has unearthed many of Devora’s social media haunts including a Twitter account, Facebook page, Tumblr blog, and several MySpace pages. The jewel of his finds is her YouTube account which is filled with fascinating slices of Ms. Clemmons’ creative output.
Second, a few months ago as I was in line waiting to check out at a local thrift shop, I glanced at a rack of CDs near the register. Sitting there was a copy of Six Petals. I purchased it thinking I got lucky and scored another copy to add to my collection. The art work and track list was identical to the copies I already had. I popped it into the CD player to make sure it played and was amazed at what I heard. The tracks on the original Six Petals were simple recordings with Ms. Clemmons singing against an electric piano background. The tracks on this CD are completely new versions of the songs, most with expanded arrangements. The title track, for example, adds banjo, percussion, and spoken word sections to the mix, creating a quite different feel than the stripped down original.
I’ll admit that Leah Devorah/Devora Clemmons is not for everyone. She’s an odd bird who’s following her own flight plan, but there is something about her music that makes me return to it over and over again. I’d like to extend a sincere thanks to Mr. Turkington for his detective work. It is nice to know that Devora is still going strong and I look forward to seeing what she will come up with next. Have fun listening and as always, Enjoy!