Devapriya Nayak (Debu) was born in West Bengal, India, and began learning tabla at the age of three from his grandfather, Chaudhury Kausalya Nandan, who was an accomplished pakhawaj and tabla player of the Punjab Gharana. Later, Debu became a disciple of Pt. Radhakanta Nandi of the Benaras Gharana. In 1981, Debu came to the US to pursue higher studies and continued his tabla taalim from Maestros like Ustad Zakir Hussain , Pandit Anindo Chattergee and Pt. Samir Chatterjee.
Currently Debu remains a ‘Ganda Bandha’ shishya of Pt. Samir Chatterjee. Debu is an accomplished soloist and accompanist. He has performed with renowned artists like Pt. Vinayak Torvi, Pt. Ramesh Mishra, Ustad Fahimuddin Dagar, Habib Wali Mohammad, Asif Ali Khan, Shahanaz Begum, Gaurav Mazumdar, Partha Bose, Mitali Banerjee-Bhawmik, Tulika Ghosh and many others.
Recently, his tabla was featured in a collaborative effort of Indian Classical Music and Jazz. The CD, called PROBE, is currently available under ‘World
Music’ at the Sackler Gallery Bookstore in the Smithsonian. He along with the members of PROBE have also performed at the Smithsonian Institution.
Debu's recent performance at the Kennedy Center with Gaurav Majumdar on Sitar earned him wide scale accolades from the Washington music circle.
He is also the director of the Washington DC Chapter of Chhandayan, a tabla school dedicated to the promotion of tabla and Indian Classical Music in the
Washington DC metro area. Debu is a computer engineer by profession and employed by the United States Department of Education, but music remains his ultimate passion.