South Londoner Jessie Ware is a soulful singer-songwriter who trained classically at primary school. After finishing her English literature degree at Sussex University, Brighton, Ware started out in 2010 as an occasional backing singer for her old school friend Jack Peñate, whilst working as a journalist on the Jewish Chronicle and as a P.A. in a production company. Ware quit the latter job when she was invited to tour with Peñate, during which the singer was introduced to masked producer SBTRKT. That same year Ware lent her thick, silky vocals to SBTRKT's tune, "Nervous," and her ability to ride the Dubstep musician's skittering beats earned Ware a solo deal. "Devotion" is the title track of her debut album, which was released by PMR Records on August 20, 2012.
Ware told The Sun that Devotion is, "my first real attempt at writing and learning how to be a songwriter." She continued: "It is honest and romantic and combines all of my different musical passions from Hip-Hop to Disney music."
Dave Okumu, who is the frontman for the UK Alt-Rock act The Invisible, produced this title track. In fact, it was Okumu's rough demo for the song that established the direction for the project. "We were gonna just write together," Ware explained to Billboard magazine, "and he had this idea for a song called 'Devotion' and had the first verse and the chorus. It was just the most beautiful thing to me, and I went, 'Oh my God. This is exactly the kind of music I wanted to make.'"
The Digital Spy
site selected Devotion
as their top album of 2012. They said: "A smart and sophisticated debut that remains utterly compelling throughout, and serves as a message to guest vocalists everywhere that there is plenty of light at the end of the tunnel."