Although she was a powerful blues guitarist, songwriter, and singer, Deborah Coleman got her first inspiration from an unlikely place: seeing the pop group the Monkees on TV. Born in Portsmouth, Virginia and raised in a military family, Coleman took to music easily enough, since her dad played piano, two brothers played guitar, and a sister played guitar and keyboards. She picked up the guitar at age eight after seeing the Monkees and began to play professionally at 15, playing bass with a series of Portsmouth-area R&B and rock bands. She later switched to guitar after hearing Jimi Hendrix, also taking to James Brown and the Beatles. Coleman began buying records by blues-rock groups like Cream and Led Zeppelin, and slowly followed the music's origins back to basic blues. When she was 25, she got married and focused on raising her ...
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