A powerful musical cocktail
“BLACK, My Story”, showing at the Clink Theatre this Friday and Saturday night, is a cocktail of musical genres - rock and roll, blues, jazz, RnB and gospel.
“It’s a little bit of everything, that’s me,” Alteouise DeVaughn said.
And she’s right. With a heritage of American, Indian and Irish her culture is as eclectic as her musical.
The show is all about her life and concentrates on the music that relates to her family. It aims to illuminate the string ties around her musical identity that lead back to the various cultural influences she’s had in her life.
“I’ll answer questions about my heritage,” Ms DeVaughn said. “People ask me where I’m from and I say California.
“And then they say ‘Where are your parents from?’ and I say, well, my dad was born in Alabama. My ancestors are all American.
“It’s impossible to trace my heritage. There’s American, Indian, Irish. There’s seven in my family and we’re all such a mix. We have our own culture. I can have my own story and I’m sharing my heritage.”
“My story is music, I am music,” she said.
The show is in honour of Black History month and goes all the way back to Ms DeVaughn’s ancestors.
It jumps through her upbringing, the countless days spent at her father’s baptist church and her mother’s musical influence that shaped her into a classical singer. It follows her introduction to rock and roll after she met her husband, Idris, and the love she has developed for the blues.
Ms DeVaughn will perform with the Voices of the North Community, who she has been training for more than two years.
“I tell the choir all the time when I work with them, ‘You can’t sound like a white choir’,” she said. “My music comes from being in the church, and being around music my whole life. You need to listen to the stories and there need to be feelings to make the music full.
“It doesn’t come from the colour of your skin, it comes from within.”
The show will become an annual event, with each year delivering a different theme.
“Next year will be “Black, 60 Years in the Making”, because I turn 60 and I know many of my talented friends will be in town and I’ve just got to share them with Port Douglas.” Ms DeVaughn said.
Alteouise DeVaughn and the choir in Black, My Story, a powerful blend of musical genres.