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Friday, September 2, 2016

Boom's 'Ladies of The 80's Exclusive Interview- Freestyle Favorite Debbie Deb

(Photos: Deborah Kowalski)

I recently had the cool opportunity to attend a Freestyle show in White Plains, NY. Many jokes were made about the "Real Housewives of Westchester county" coming out in full force to attend this event and who could blame them? The roster was jammed with 12 back-to-back acts, including Debbie Deb, who needs absolutely no introduction to true freestyle fans. Here's the thing, if you haven't a clue what freestyle music is, you're still very likely to know Deb's music. Her songs "Lookout Weekend" and "When I Hear Music" are still played in clubs across the country and they've been revisited and covered by the likes of Gwen Stefani. I was able to grab the bubbly performer's attention for a few minutes and she was thrilled to have a chance to connect with her fans via a quick Q&A session.

Cate Meighan: What does it feel like to know that more than 30 years after "Lookout Weekend" first broke through, it's still a regularly played club song?

Debbie Deb:  Sometimes it's surreal for me.  Sometimes I don't even realize that's my voice pumping through the woofers and tweeters.  I still tend to get butterflies to this day cause everyone will point to me and I do get shy.  I don't go out to get any attention.  There's always a real sense of gratefulness that it's playing and people are getting down.  It's a great feeling and I love to watch.  

CM: Your songs have been covered by the likes of Gwen Stefani & Janet Jackson- what is that like for you?

DD: It makes me feel very flattered and I sometimes wonder if they would ever want to meet me.  Once again, I do stay very humble about it.  

CM: How does it feel to still be performing these songs so many years later?

DD: 20 years ago, if you told me this was gonna be my reality, I would have lost if we were betting.  I was not looking for this by any means but today I love it and I love the people jamming with me.  There's no way to explain the feeling they give me. 


CM: How do you choose the dancers that are on stage with you?

DD: This is pretty close to my heart.  I only want the locals of the town I'm in. I really want people that are electric and who never get a chance to show it due to a variety of reasons.  E.g. being too heavy, low self esteem, or just to shy.  I love picking older and younger folks and just finding a good mixture to represent how people really look today.  

CM: Are you a real freestyle fan? What other music do you like to listen to?

DD: I do love Freestyle because it's been a huge part of who I am, but I must say that I love anyone from Tori Amos to Pearl Jam and Metallica- also Shabba Ranks.  I am somewhat of a music snob but I respect all music.  

CM: Who inspires you? 

DD:  Anyone that has a God given gift.  People that have a natural talent in different things. 


CM:  Tell me something about Debbie Deb that would totally surprise me.

DD:I am a huge cat lover - I love any animal in general but I do want to be that "cat lady". 
I love cooking a variety of different ethnic foods.  I love to draw and it serves as therapy for me.  I need to be near water (not just because I'm a Pisces)  I love crazy demented, off the wall, indie films that I was turned on to by my two moms. (My mom and her wife).

CM: What would you like to say to all of your fans out there?

DD:  I owe everything that I'm doing now to my fans of Old School for keeping me going via music.  I consider all my fans my personal friends.  I have a wonderful husband that holds things together for me and whom I tend not to give enough credit.  I want people to know that I'm just a regular girl trying to live life as best I can.  We all need to work out demons that may take us down and show them who's in charge.  When I meet someone, I love to hear about them.  Selfishness is something I run from.  

You can catch Debbie Deb playing live across the country with Freestyle Explosion with a bunch of other artists so hit the link for ticket info. Check out a recent live performance of "When I Hear Music" below!



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