Growing up in Caracas, Venezuela, and Los Angeles, Devendra Banhart was always playing music and drawing, but it wasn't until his brief stay at the San Francisco Art Institute that the disciplines became his constant companions. Banhart's early songs were brief, half-finished, or written in stream-of-consciousness form, and recorded on shoddy, hand-me-down, four-track machines. They weren't initially intended for release, but friends encouraged him, and he sent out a few tentative demos. Michael Gira (Swans) issued the first Banhart material on his Young God imprint in October 2002, and comparisons to legends of songwriting, eclecticism, and tragedy were frequent (Tim Buckley, Syd Barrett), with the result of making him a new underground folk hero. ~ Jason MacNeil & Johnny Loftus
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