Devin, who was born and raised in Chicago, was raised by his single mother. In addition to being a student at Rickover Naval Academy High School, he also had worked at a local Starbucks. He has since graduated.
Before Idol, Devin had previously tried out for both The Voice and The X-Factor, not making it on either show.
Season 12 was Devin's very first attempt at American Idol, unlike other finalists such as Candice Glover, Janelle Arthur, Amber Holcomb, and Curtis Finch, Jr. who've tried out one or more times at the show. He auditioned in his hometown of Chicago and was presumably good since he was sent to Hollywood. His audition never aired on national TV.
Devin tried out for season 12 in Chicago, Illinois where he was sent to Hollywood. Due to his audition never airing, it is unknown what song he sang. During Hollywood, he sang "Payphone", "What a Wonderful World", and an unknown third song that passed him into the group rounds of Hollywood. After advancing on into the Top 40, he was sent to Las Vegas where he sang "Listen"; this song eventually passed him into the Top 20. During the Top 20, he sang "Somos Novios (It's Impossible)" which earned him a final spot in the Top 10 where he's currently competing. Once entering the Top 10, the victory song he sang was "The Power of One (Change the World)". During the Top 10, Devin performed "Temporary Home" by Carrie Underwood, which is off of her 2009 album Play On. The result of his song helped him make it to the Top 9. During the Top 9, Devin performed "The Long and Winding Road" from the Lennon-McCartney songbook. The result of his song put him in the bottom three, but helped him make it to the Top 8. His take on the Smokey Robinson and The Miracles song "Tracks of My Tears", which had previously been covered by Adam Lambert during season 8, and his group performance of the Four Tops' "I Can't Help Myself" with Burnell Taylor and Lazaro Arbos resulted in Devin getting eliminated on March 28, 2013. He finished 8th out of all.
|Episode||Theme||Song choice||Original artist||Order #||Result|
|Audition||Auditioner's Choice||Not aired||N/A||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 1||A Capella||Not aired||N/A||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 2||Group Performance||"Payphone"||Maroon 5||N/A||Advanced|
|Hollywood Round, Part 3||Solo||"What a Wonderful World"||Louis Armstrong||N/A||Advanced|
|Las Vegas Round||Personal Choice||"Listen"||Beyonce||6||Advanced|
|Top 20 (10 Men)||Personal Choice||"Somos Novios (It's Impossible)"||Perry Como||9||Advanced|
|Victory Song||"The Power of One (Change the World)"||Israel Houghton||4|
|Top 10||Music of the American Idols||"Temporary Home"||Carrie Underwood||3||Bottom 2|
|Top 9||The Beatles||"The Long and Winding Road"||The Beatles||8||Bottom 3|
|Top 8||Music of Motor City||Solo "The Tracks of My Tears"||The Miracles||5||Eliminated|
|Trio: "I Can't Help Myself (Sugar Pie Honey Bunch)" with Lazaro Arbos & Burnell Taylor||Four Tops||10|
After his elimination, Devin expressed in an interview that he felt that judge Nicki Minaj was being unfair in her criiticism the night prior. This led to Minaj going on Twitter to defend herself against his accusations.
Devin was a part of the American Idols Live tour, which kicked off on July 19, 2013 in Kent, Washington and ended on August 31, 2013 in Nashville.
|Candice Glover · Kree Harrison · Angie Miller · Amber Holcomb · Janelle Arthur · Lazaro Arbos · Burnell Taylor · Devin Velez · Paul Jolley · Curtis Finch, Jr.|