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The Velveteers' Demi Demitro - Friends of the DFC

Demi Demitro, singer/guitarist for the Boulder, Colorado-born rock trio The Velveteers, is currently on tour (with bandmates/drummers Baby Pottersmith and Jonny Fig) and took the time to give us a glimpse into her life and music.

Growing up in Boulder, Demi practiced guitar up to nine hours a day. She, Pottersmith and Fig formed The Velveteers in 2014 and developed a reputation for their raw, energetic performances. Music superstar Dan Auerbach (from The Black Keys) saw videos of their shows and “instantly dug them … they just sound so powerful.” He liked their sound so much he invited them to his studio in Nashville. 

In October 2021, the Colorado band released their first album Nightmare Daydream, with Auerbach producing.

the velveteersInfluences
Demi remembers “a local band from Boulder called Rose Hill Drive that had a really big impact on me ever since I can remember. Hearing their music is what made me want to play guitar and start a rock band. I also love Grace Potter, PJ Harvey, St. Vincent, Deap Vally and Lana Del Rey.”

Demi says she wanted to become a musician because it made her feel empowered. “When I started making music it finally felt like I found the one thing that brought me to life. There was no feeling as beautiful as being in the moment of creating music. It sounds silly, but when I started writing music I felt like I became more connected and in tune with the world around me. I started noticing little beautiful things that otherwise I never really cared about before.”  

Early on Demi took two guitar lessons but then decided to teach herself. “I started listened to a lot of rock albums and then those bands and their records just sort of became my teachers. I would sit down and play along to bands like Rose Hill Drive, The Strokes, PJ Harvey and the Stooges for hours.” Some music currently on her playlist includes Norah Jones, Brockhampton, Sparklehorse, Blur and John Lennon. 

Songwriting and Collaborating
Like many songwriters, Demi is very disciplined. “I love the idea of The Beatles keeping ‘banker’s hours’ (as songwriters) and I think it’s very similar to my creative process. I sit down every day and write songs and always try to be consistent about it. There’s a really great book that focuses on this type of creative process called ‘The War of Art’ by an author named Steven Pressfield. I recommend anyone who’s an artist should read it because it definitely changed my life and the way I work.” 

the velveteersDemi and the band “felt really honored to get the opportunity to work with Dan (Auerbach). He’s the real deal and just knew how to capture our live sound which was impressive to me. Dan helped broaden our horizons and bring out elements in our music we otherwise might not have thought of ourselves.” 

As a woman in the music business, Demi “feels grateful for all the women who came before me because without them I wouldn’t be where I am. But I have to say there is still so much that needs to change in the music industry. There is so much misogyny and it makes me want to cry. I feel like I constantly have to convince people to take me seriously when that shouldn’t even be a thought that crosses my mind. I’m lucky to have had great mentors early on, like the women in Deap Vally, who taught me how to stick up for myself.”  

When she gets back to Denver, Demi’s looking forward to seeing the store in person. “I haven’t been to the Denver Folklore Center, but I’d love to visit sometime!” 

You can catch Demi and The Velveteers performing at the Fox Theatre in Boulder on April 15th with Dry Ice & Rose Variety. And at the Aggie Theater in Fort Collins on April 16th with Plasma Canvas & Cody. Get more information and tickets HERE