The Gypsy-tinged quartet DeVotchKa were formed in Denver, CO by multi-instrumentalists Nick Urata (vocals, guitar, trumpet), Tom Hagerman (violin, accordion), Jeanie Schroder (sousaphone, bass), and percussionist Shawn King.
Supporting musicians rotated in and out of the eclectic group's lineup, contributing such diverse sounds as strings and bazoukis. While some described DeVotchKa's sound as polka-rock or circus music, the band was actually a cross-pollination of numerous influences, including cabaret, spaghetti Westerns, and the immigrant dance music of Eastern Europe. Supermelodrama, their self-released 2000 debut, garnered numerous accolades, and the band toured in support of the record with such luminaries as Calexico, 16 Horsepower, Flogging Molly, and Archer Prewitt. Una Volta followed in May 2003. Issued by the Boulder, CO indie Cicero, DeVotchKa promoted the album through a tour with noted burlesque/fetish entertainer Dita Von Teese. Their solid third album, How It Ends, was released in 2004, followed by Curse Your Little Heart, an EP of covers that included Siouxsie and the Banshees' "Last Beat of My Heart" and the Velvet Underground's "Venus in Furs." In 2006, they composed the lush score for Little Miss Sunshine, earning a Grammy nomination for Best Soundtrack. In March of 2008, the band's most mature release, A Mad and Faithful Telling, hit the shelves, reaching the number nine slot on the Billboard Heatseekers chart. In 2011 the group released its sixth studio album, the moody and triumphant 100 Lovers. ~ Johnny Loftus