The Paul deLay Band
(Evidence Records ECD 26115-2)
by Dick Houff
Review date: October 2001
1999 KBA Award Winner|
Achievement for Blues on the Internet
Presented by the Blues Foundation
This new outing from Evidence Records (four previous discs) is a brilliant package for "The Paul deLay Band." I have been a big fan of Paul deLay from the very beginning-he's a survivor. Paul started out in the 70's, and if you've read my columns and previous reviews, then I don't have to remind you; for the uninitiated, the 70's were hell on
earth for touring bluesmen and women. The competition for gigs was a painful experience (see previous interviews with Luther Allison, John Hammond, etc.). Paul's first decade in the blues began in 1970, when he helped form the Portland, Oregon band "Brown Sugar." After a nine year stint, he formed his first band and recorded four albums over a ten year period. Unfortunately, for Paul, those were the years of drugs and
booze. He was busted on a cocaine charge in 1990, which netted him a three year prison term. I've known many people in the music industry that have followed the same path. And usually, the end result is non-recovery for both artist and career. However, Paul is a champion that faced and overcame his addictions. He has proven himself as an
artist with a message; deLay prefers his own material over covers and this album is living proof of a man that cannot be denied. On this disc, you'll note a new change in lineup. He has replaced the bass guitar by adding a Hammond organ for bass lines, and it works well with his sound. There are fourteen songs on "Heavy Rotation" that weave like a
well connected book of short stories. The songs of experience; from pain and suffering, to joy and celebration. Paul's harp and a damn tough band will take you on a whirlwind tour of the American landscape-dig it!
This review is copyright © 2001 by Dick Houff, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.