Whitesnake announce new bassist, Tanya O’Callaghan

David Coverdale and Tanya O'Callaghan
(Image credit: Scott Dudelson/John Atashian via Getty Images)

Whitesnake have announced they’ve recruited bassist Tanya O’Callaghan for their upcoming farewell tour, who will replace outgoing bass guitar player Michael Devin.

O’Callaghan, an Irish musician who operates as an established freelance bassist, has a star-studded resume, which includes stints with Dee Snider, Steven Adler and Maynard Keenan, as well as numerous TV appearances.

Breaking the news in a statement on the band’s official website, Whitesnake wrote, “Well, well well, ladies and gentlemen, boys and girls. We are very proud to announce and introduce you all to our newest Snake… or should I say, Snakette!

“A whirling dervish of a performer whom we feel will bring a fresh, new, exciting musicality and welcome energy to the band, both in the studio and onstage.”

“For whatever reasons,” Coverdale added, “Whitesnake has never featured a female musician in the band before. Bad boys! We are thrilled and delighted to welcome Tanya O’Callaghan to Whitesnake. Let the music do the talking!”

Coverdale went on to say that O’Callaghan was the first person Whitesnake reached out to following Devin’s departure after being “blown away” by her performance at the 2019 M3 Festival, where she played in Stephen Adler’s band.

On her own social media account, O’Callaghan wrote, “I guess the snake’s out of the bag. What an absolute honor to be joining Whitesnake/David Coverdale for their worldwide farewell tour.

“This small town gal still pinches herself over the amount of legends I’ve had the joy to work, tour and record with over the past few years since I made the terrifying solo leap across the Pacific with no clue how everything would unfold.

“It’s been a wild ride and just when I thought it couldn’t get any better, who calls, only Whitesnake!” she continued. “And the best part, to step into the snake shoes of my bass brothers Rudy Sarzo, Tony Franklin, Neil Murray and Micahel Devin… are you kidding me.

“What an honor beyond belief. My heart is exploding.”

O’Callaghan’s swift recruitment comes after Devin’s departure was announced over the weekend by the Coverdale-fronted outfit, with Devin describing his decade-long tenure with Whitesnake as “pure magic”.

In a statement shared to social media, Devin wrote, “I will sincerely miss the guys. They are my family. I wish David Coverdale a most rewarding Farewell tour, he deserves all the love and support on his Farewell that I know the fans will bring to the concert hall.”

He also offered some words of praise for the band’s incoming instrumentalist, saying, “Best wishes to Tanya O’Callaghan, a badass bassist and friend. She will lay down the low-end in the most righteous way.”

Whitesnake are currently preparing for their worldwide farewell tour, which is set to kick off in May next year.

To find out more, head over to Whitesnake's official website.

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Matt Owen

Matt is a Staff Writer, writing for Guitar World, Guitarist and Total Guitar. He has a Masters in the guitar, a degree in history, and has spent the last 16 years playing everything from blues and jazz to indie and pop. When he’s not combining his passion for writing and music during his day job, Matt records for a number of UK-based bands and songwriters as a session musician.