Girija Devi was born in Varanasi (Benares) in 1929. This city was considered one of the most important centres for music and dance; a city where vocal styles such as thumri, dadra, chaiti and kajri developed and flourished over centuries.
Girija Devi studied first with Pandit Sarju Prasad Misra, a well known singer and sarangi player, and later with Pandit Chandra Misra. She married a business man at a very young age who supported her in her pursuit of her passion for music.
Today, Girija Devi is the finest of the few surviving performers in the Purab style. A wonderful singer of khyal, she also excels in the lighter classical traditions of thumri, tappa, kajri, dadra and chaiti, which have all emerged from folk music.
She has, of course, a huge repertoire covering all these forms.