Subject: I have found a CD that I think you would enjoy
Similarly Requested CDs
A great bluesman who ought to be more than a cult hero
Charles Krakoff | Acton, MA USA | 09/20/2001
(5 out of 5 stars)
"When I was going to college in Portland, Oregon in the mid-seventies, Paul DeLay's band played a regular Tuesday night gig at Claudia's Tavern on Southeast Powell Blvd. I, together with several other diehard blues fans, went almost every week. Little Walter was dead, and this was as close as we could come to hearing him live. Paul's band played a lot of Little Walter and other Chicago classics. His harmonica talent was superb - easily the equal of the playing of better-known musicians like Charlie Musslewhite or Jerry Portnoy. A very large man, Paul would sway out to the microphone, close his eyes in a squint, and play. His music was everything every bar band has ever aspired to be, but it far transcended the constraints of that genre. We were hearing sublime art created, and never mind the smell of smoky carpets and stale beer. His singing was as good as his playing, and that is saying a great deal. Even then, though, it was clear that Paul had some drinking and drug problems. He seemed doomed to play out his career in front of audiences of a few dozen people, half of them just looking for a glass of beer and a place out of the rain.I moved away from the Northwest and never heard of Paul again, Meanwhile, other musicians from the local scene, notably Robert Cray, became big stars.Then, in 1999, I was in Singapore and found this CD, which is a reissue of two earlier albums he recorded in the early 1990s. The liner notes recounted Paul's travails, which had included a heart attack onstage and a stretch in Federal prison for dealing cocaine to support his habit (his musical career was clearly not making him rich or famous). The music knocked me out! It was the same Paul Delay, a wizard on the chromatic harmonica with the same clear and soulful voice, but a whole new dimension had been added. Instead of playing Little Walter covers, Paul had recorded two entire albums of original material that he had written. The songs, squarely in the Chicago tradition, were nonetheless fresh and new. I almost hugged the record store owner. This is a great recording by a great and original bluesman."
If Paul DeLay could just Sing....
Corky Beachglow | Palos Verdes, CA USA | 04/14/2007
(3 out of 5 stars)
"I bought this and thought there would be some variety, but his band doesn't ever really 'let go' and this man's voice has the same tenor and texture throughout the whole CD....Why not some acoustic change at least? SOMETHING/ANYTHING! As for Paul's harp skills, both chromatic and diatonic are outstanding, but if the harp didn't carry the songs, his singing approach sure wouldn't! I guess Texas blues and players from that genre just have more gutsy and emotional sounding riffs...DeLays jazzy riffs are catchy but Stevie Wonder's chromatic would blow DeLay off the stage and Kim Wilson's diatonic attack would bring him to his knees! There's room for everybody though and Paul's been around making people happy for a long time. Check out Heavy Rotation."
Great CD! Highly reccomended.
Corky Beachglow | 06/17/1999
(5 out of 5 stars)
"I agree with everyting in the review by the fan from Oakland. This is one jumpin' CD! Just wanted to correct one small error. The Billtown Blues Association is located in Williamsport, PA, not Baltimore, MD. One sideline, the BBA just had their 10th annual Blues Fest this weekend which incuded Mr. Delay in the lineup. He was just fantastic! Pick up this CD and anything else by Paul Delay for some of the funkiest (and most prodigious) harp playing you will ever hear."