"...Devo started as a visual art idea, Art Devo. And there was an element of satire/prank in it. Then we applied it to music and got much more serious about it." - Jerry (2010)[1]
“Bob Lewis and I used to refer to the common person as ‘spuds.’ They’re underrated, but they fed the world during the famine. They have eyes all around, they conduct electricity. In other words, they’re underrated, under-appreciated and absolutely necessary.” - Jerry (2023)[2]
“The potato is a staple that keeps us alive. It is totally unglamorous and underrated. It is also a conductor of electricity. You know that they teach you in science class how to make potatoes transmitters and potato radio receivers. They have all eyes around.” - Jerry (late 90s*)[3]
"...We called ourselves spuds, and we used that term in exchange for comrades or mates." - Mark (2022)[4]
“I was putting up my own pieces of obscure imagery and poetry around campus… Because of the decals, a grad student came up to me one day and said, ‘Are you the guy putting astronauts holding potatoes up around campus? My name’s Jerry Casale. I wondered what your interest in potatoes was.’ We started collaborating on visual art, and then after the shootings, we started collaborating on music.” - Mark (2014)[5]
“Devo, the band, was born out of something that happened when Mothersbaugh and other founding members were students at Kent State University in Ohio. “When we first started Devo, Jerry [Casale, bassist] and Bob [Lewis, guitar] and I were artists who were working in a number of different medias. We were around for the shootings at Kent State, and it affected us... We were thinking like, ‘What are we observing?’ We decided we weren’t observing evolution; we were observing devolution so we decided to write music around that.” Mark (2020)[6]
" was our description, y'know, of what we saw going on around us, and we lived in Akron and we'd read the papers and watch television, watch the news, and just observe life on the planet... it seemed to us that the best way to describe it wasn't really evolution but was de-evolution.
"It seemed like technology was just helping lower the quality of life rather than to make life easier or better for people." - Mark (1988)[7]
"It was a conceptual multimedia band, a collaboration of artists.” - Jerry (2023)[8]
"Devolution's a big idea about the way things are. Everyone has a big idea about the way things are whether they admit it or not: a lot of people's ideas masquerade themselves as non-ideas, which we find the most dishonest.
Devo just has the biggest, best and most interesting ideas about reality that allow people to discover things, which is exactly what other ideas don't allow. Other ideas begin by ignoring what's there so their idea doesn't account for the whole picture.
It's like when people thought that the earth was at the centre of the universe, but the movement of certain planets didn't really match because their idea of what was happening was, at basis, wrong. And when the premise is wrong, everything else that follows is sick." - Jerry (1978)[9]
"...When Devo first burst onto the scene in the late seventies and early eighties
the band was so polarizing that while Rolling Stone magazine labeled them "fascist",
David Bowie was an early booster and Brian Eno signed on as their producer.
Their hallmark sounds were jerky mechanical riffs, unusual time signatures and atonal jabs,
but they still found a way to make it all "pop".
They were a visually coherent outfit from their first concert on,
that anticipated the world of MTV by several years and became a staple of music television
when the concept finally caught up to them.
And more than any other outsider band of the era, they managed to carve out a niche
inside mainstream culture, in part by poking a stick in its eye every chance they got..."

- Jian Ghomeshi, radio broadcaster (2010)[10]
"'Devo is an educational band… Every album has more information on it. But people don't really want information; namby-pamby music is what they want." - Mark (1982)[11]
"The most shocking information to us over the years is that there is less positive information, more misinformation being shared and being acted upon, until we're in the condition we're in now with the planet. -Mark (2009).
Right, if you're lucky you might have a few months here and there where you thought things were like - oh this cool, this is taking a correction - but when you step back from it over the last thirty years and you look at the actual milestones, they aren't going up." - Robert "Bob 2" Casale (2009).[12]

See Also[]

“Gerald Casale: Oral History of Devo". (1995). Uploaded by to YouTube by EGKunz.
[Footage shot for a 1995 Rock 'n' Roll history documentary.]

Further Reading[]

D-E-V-O by DEVO. (the original title as announced in 2016,) published as Devo:The Brand / Devo:Unmasked by Rocket 88 Books in 2018. [13]
Devo's Freedom Of Choice by Evie Nagy. With a foreword by Fred Armisen. (33 1/3 book series) Bloomsbury Publishing, 2015. [14]


Devo, the brand ; Devo unmasked
Author- Devo (Musical group) (Editor)
159 pages[sic, 160 pages ; 156 pages] : color illustrations ; 28 cm
OCLC Number / Unique Identifier: 1034620292
Devo (2018a). DEVO: The Brand. London: Rocket 88 Books Publishing. (160 pages.) ISBN 9781910978016.
Devo (2018b). DEVO: Unmasked. London: Rocket 88 Books Publishing. (156 pages.) ISBN 9781910978016.

Extra info[]

Press / book promotion -


  1. Stegall, T. "Gerry Casale (DEVO)". (2010, September 01). (From

  2. Mitchell, M. “A Half-Century of Devo and the Spudeoisie”. Paste Magazine. (2023, November 10). (From

  3. Knight, B. "Oh Yes, It’s Devo: An Interview with Jerry Casale". Vermont Review. Tripod / Lycos. (*archived on 2002, March 31).
    ...the potato is (a) symbol of our humble beginnings.

    *Knight wrote "for a local magazine in the late 1990's"...
    The Vermont Review website post by Brian L. Knight was sometime from late 90s to March 2002.
    This article page for DEVO always shows the current date.

  4. Lecaro, L. “Living Legends: Devo Subverted The Herd Mentality Beginning In The ’70s, But Their Art Punk Aesthetic Is More Relevant Than Ever:
    Devo’s Mark Mothersbaugh and Jerry Casale discuss the evolution of devolution, and the video revolution they helped whip into reality: ‘We drew a line in the sand, and either you hated Devo or you loved Devo’. “ / Recording Academy. (2022, April 20). (From

    Lecaro: What is the significance of the potato? Mothersbaugh: We were trying to figure out, who are we? And how do we fit into the world? We were both the kids of working class parents, and we decided we weren't asparagus people or part of the elite or the rich, we were like potatoes. We were like spuds.
    We were like asymmetrical, not very good looking vegetables that came from underground. But they were a staple of everybody's diet in the USA. The interesting thing about potatoes for us, it's like, potatoes have eyes all around, so they see everything. So we called ourselves spuds, and we used that term in exchange for comrades or mates.

  5. Yablon, A. “Devo’s Mark Mothersbaugh’s Art-Fueled journey from Akron to Hollywood.” Vulture. (2014, December 19).
    Photo: Decals by Mark Mothersbaugh, Lucas Cows, 1969. (From

  6. Kreps, D. “Mark Mothersbaugh explains how tragedy inspired Devo in animated clip”. Rolling Stone. (2020, May 10).
    https://www.rollingstone com/music/music-news/mark-mothersbaugh-explains-how-tragedy-inspired-devo-in-animated-clip-39558/ (From

  7. Dan Bailey. "Mark Mothersbaugh Interview, June 1988". Uploaded to YouTube by bonzaiko, from
    (Has accurate subtitles.)

  8. Parker, L. (Editor in Chief, Yahoo Music). "Devo on how the Carter/Reagan election inspired 'Whip It,' what Jagger thought of their 'Satisfaction' cover and why it's 'depressing' that their message still resonates 50 years later:
    ‘From the very beginning, there were people that were just like, ‘Oh, it's a joke.’ Or the record company would call us ‘quirky’ — which is kind of one way to just defuse anything serious.’ ” Yahoo! Entertainment. (Updated October 26, 2023).

    “What we were doing was making connections between dissimilar things and fusing them together to show people that you could be innovative and think for yourself. And that was the real warning. We were telling people to quit conforming and start thinking for themselves,” Casale elaborates. “I mean, we always intended to be a multimedia performance band. We never had an intention of being a rock ‘n’ roll act.

  9. Savage, J. "ARE WE NOT READY?" Sounds. (1978, March 4). Retrieved from (From

  10. “Devo on QTV”. q on cbc. Uploaded to YouTube on 2010, March 31.
    ["Studio Q" host Jian Ghomeshi's introduction to interview with Gerald V. Casale and Robert "Bob 2" Casale.]

  11. Graff, G. "Backtrack - It's full speed ahead in reverse for Devo" Television/Music. Extra/Weekend Detroit Free Press. p6C. (1982, November 5).

  12. "DEVO: ShockHound Interview". DailyMotion. Uploaded by (2009, September 5).
    [Consecutive quotes by Mark and Bob2.]

  13. Michael/Devo-Obsesso. The Long Awaited DEVO Book Is Coming! Official authorized Devo book announcement. Club Devo. (2016, March 4). (From

  14. Nagy E. Devo’s Freedom of Choice . Bloomsbury Publishing. (2015).

External Links[] D-E-V-O the book by DEVO.

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Record Labels / Publishers
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MVD Audio | The Orchard | Superior Viaduct | Futurismo
Brian Eno | Ken Scott | Robert Margouleff | Roy Thomas Baker | DEVO 
The Teddybears | Greg Kurstin | Santi White | John King | John Hill | Mark Nishita 
Official Studio Albums
Q: Are We Not Men? A: We Are Devo! (1978) | Duty Now For The Future (1979) | Freedom of Choice (1980) | New Traditionalists (1981) | oh, no! it's Devo (1982) | Shout (1984) | Total Devo (1988) | SmoothNoodleMaps (1990) | Something for Everybody   (2010)
Other Albums
Be Stiff EP (1978) | E-Z Listening Disc (1987) | Now It Can Be Told: DEVO at the Palace (1989) | Hardcore DEVO Vol. 1 74-77 (1990) | Hardcore DEVO Vol. 2 1974-1977 (1991) | DEVO Live: The Mongoloid Years (1992) | DEV-O Live (1999) | Recombo DNA (2000) | Live In Central Park (2004) | DEVO Live 1980 (2005) | New Traditionalists: Live 1981 Seattle (2012) | Something ELSE for Everybody  (2013) | Miracle Witness Hour  (2014) | Live at Max's Kansas City - November 15, 1977  (2014) | Butch Devo and the Sundance Gig  (2014) | Hardcore DEVO Live!  (2015) | Art Devo 1973-1977  (2023)
In The Beginning Was The End: The Truth About De-Evolution (1976) | The Men Who Make The Music (1981) | Human Highway (1982) | We're All DEVO (1984) | The Complete Truth About De-Evolution (1993) | DEVO Live (2004) | DEVO Live In The Land Of The Rising Sun (2004) | DEVO Live 1980 (2005) | Butch Devo and the Sundance Gig  (2014) | Hardcore DEVO Live!  (2015)
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