You couldn’t be more correct if you decided to refer to Dev Hynes as an amazing triple threat performer. Not only is he good with his voice and with the pen, Hynes has also produced many hits for himself and other musicians. He has been making music officially since 2004 and during his career he has gone through two name changes. He first started singing as Lightspeed Champion before switching to Blood Orange and many now prefer to call him Dev Hynes. Hynes entered the mainstream in 2013 and brought a lot of smiles with his unconventional yet very enjoyable style of music. Here’s everything you need to know about the versatile musician’s life and career.
Dev Hynes Bio
Blood Orange was born as David Joseph MichaelHynes on December 23, 1985 in Ilford, East London, where he was raised by parents of African descent. While his mother is from Guyana, his father has his heritage in Sierra Leone. Hynes was raised in what he describes as a loving family with very personal communication with his parents. something he perceives as cultural. Both of his parents had full-time jobs; her father was a manager in a Marks & Spencer department store and her mother a health care consultant, advising mainly teenage mothers.
Dev Hynes is the latest in his family of 5 which includes two siblings who are 5 and 7 years older than him. Due to the big age difference, Hynes had a rather lonely childhood and was alone in his room, listening to British soul music (his mother’s favorite) most of the time, as well as songs from Nirvana and Bone. Thugs-n-Harmony belonging to his siblings.
This early exposure to music awakened his passion, he had moved to London at the age of 18 and was beginning to make music. He attended Chadwell Heath Foundation School, a school which has since changed its name to Chadwell Heath Academy.
Things to know about blood orange
1. Dev Hynes started his music career as a member of a band
Prior to his breakthrough in 2013 as Blood Orange, Dev Hynes was part of a dance-punk band – Test Icicles. He held several roles within the band, including synthesizer and guitar, as well as vocals. Although influenced by indie rock, the band also incorporated elements from different genres. In 2005, a year after its creation, Test Icicles released its first album. For scouting purposes only what would prove to be their last when they split in 2006. His work with the band led to him moving to New York in 2005 and he has since settled in the US city.
2. Hynes didn’t take music seriously until he worked for Solange Knowles.
After the split in his band, Dev Hynes did not give up on music. He began recording solo in 2007 under the nickname Lightspeed Champion. Over the next three years Hynes achieved commendable success as he toured extensively with friends including band members including Florence Welch of Florence and The Machine. He released two albums and had to take a brief hiatus in 2010 after a long tour left him with a badly injured throat that required major surgery.
Despite his success as a Lightspeed Champion, DevHynes didn’t start getting serious about music until 2012, when he launched his Blood Orange project. When he told The Guardian he had started to give up music until he could meet Solange Knowles and work on her EP. True, his passion was rekindled and only then did he realize that music might be his calling after all.
3. He likes playing football more than music
If Dev Hynes had never met Solange, he probably would have ended up becoming a footballer, a career he really thinks is worth pursuing. Growing up in Essex, Hynes played football and was part of Dagenham & Redbridge football club. He played at the level where Charlton Athletic scouts began to watch him, but, due to his dislike of Essex, Hynes gave up football for music. However, he continues to play as a hobby at least twice a week. Apart from football, Dev Hynes is also good at basketball and table tennis.
4. Blood Orange was bullied as a child
Growing up in Essex, Hynes faced bullying, especially from more mature black people who saw he was crossing socio-cultural boundaries. He was often beaten on the bus on his way to school. These experiences became the inspiration for his highly thematic music which he says he doesn’t want people to “immediately like”.
5. His sexual orientation is ambiguous
Dev Hynes is attracted to both men and women, but in a controversial way. When OUT Magazine put him on the cover in 2014, he was criticized for not being gay enough. Hynes confessed to trying to have sex with men he didn’t like, but he told reporter Karley Sciortino that he was attracted to a man’s strong features and good looks, even if he didn’t. he remained attracted to femininity.