Detroit “Tapped Potential” Artist

Detroit artist Zel, CMU Alumnus of 2022

Stay true to myself and have no one change me.


Detroit native Denzel Devezin, known as Zel, releases his latest project “Glory” on Feb. 3. “Glory” is one of many songs that Zel plans to employ on elevated craftsmanship as an artist. Above all, he wants to stay true to who he is as a person and to the city he was raised.

“As a quiet and shy person, I want to show that I can still have a voice,” Zel said.

Growing up on West 7 Mile, Zel experienced his neighborhood as people looking out for one another. Especially as a kid, he reminisced about going outside to play with his friends and his neighbors would make sure they were watched for safety. Coming from Detroit, Zel said that 7 Mile hasn’t been the safest part to be outside, however, he appreciated the fact he was able to grow up around people who look out for him when he was younger.

Being this “quiet, shy person,” Zel looked to music as a tool to express who he is and gravitate to influencers, such as Lil Wayne, who showed that they can just be themselves in an industry that is capitalized. Zel said it was because of Lil Wayne’s lyrics and flow that he idolized him. He saw himself in Lil Wayne when he talked about love for his city and making sure he wasn’t another “statistic in the system.”

“You can have a voice, too; use it the way you want to,” Zel said.

Zel is a Central Michigan University alumnus of 2022. After achieving this milestone, Zel hopes to work on a collaboration tape with other Detroit artists. Before that, he is working on a solo project of his own called “Tapped Potential.” This project will draw out Zel’s influence from his city and who he is as a character.