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Delbert McClinton - Rocking the Boat

Rocking the Boat

Delbert McClinton

JC Communications - DVD

Available from FilmBaby.

A review written for the Folk & Acoustic Music Exchange
by Bob Gottlieb

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This is a relaxed look at a Road Warrior who has been around a fair stretch of time, and has the scars, which help when he tells the stories, to show for his commitment to a life as a performer of this Rocking Blues music. The conversations are not forced, they are relaxed chatter between friends, but like the performances, were all culled from over 150 hours of film aboard the 2006 Sandy Beaches cruise, a sample of a cruise he does every year. It is a good mix of acts that are both well known and those that are not so well known, but due to their musical prowess are equally deserving of the attention. Though most performers come from the Blues or Rhythm and Blues fields he also includes Zydeco, Country, Funk, and Rock; the one thing all of the acts demonstrate is a soul that comes from the honesty of believing in what you do.

Delbert has been around playing in clubs in his home city of Fort Worth, Texas, since the 1950's;, He always seemed to make a living, but had no real great successes until he moved back to Texas, after stints in Los Angeles and other cities, though he has lived in Nashville for the last umpteen years. He was known as a rock solid performer who his peers regarded with great respect. In the 90's he started coming into his own in what is now called Roots music, but was then playing a fusion of Blues, R&B, Soul and Country. His gravelly voice and harmonica playing (on a tour of England in the 1960s with Bruce Channel he taught a young John Lennon to play harmonica) have been his signature synthesis of the Texas music he grew up with. On this cruise he also has people such as Marcia Ball, Rodney Crowell, Wayne Toups, Terry Allen, Stephen Bruton among others to share the sea air. They all get a turn at performing and talking about their music, and the 'incidents' that make up life on the road. Singling out any one performance or performer is impossible on this DVD they are all high energy and the chatter is just as interesting and engrossing as the high voltage music.

Set List:

  • Delbert: B-Movie Boxcar Blues
  • Jimmy Hall: That's the Truth
  • Delbert: 2 More Bottles
  • Rodney Crowell: Dancing Circles Round the Sun
  • Rodney Crowell: Fate's Right Hand
  • Stephen Bruton: Right on Time
  • Mingo Fishtrap: In the Bank
  • Terry Allen: Rendezvous USA
  • Al Anderson: Another Trip Around the Sun
  • Paul Thorn: Mission Temple Fireworks Stand
  • Tommy Castro: Wake Up Call
  • Delbert: New York City
  • Delbert: Shakey Ground
  • Marcia Ball: Louisiana 1927
  • Jeff Steele: Help Somebody
  • Wayne Toups: Please Explain
  • Teresa James: Come Up and See Me Sometime
  • Marcia Ball: Let Me Play with Your Poodle
  • Delbert: Hammerhead Stew
  • Delbert: Never Been Rocked Enough
  • Delbert (Credit Roll): Watchin' the Rain


  • Terry Allen: Gimme a Ride to Heaven, Boy
  • Buddy Miller: I Worry Too Much
  • Chris Stapleton: Fool Me Again

Edited by: David N. Pyles

Copyright 2007, Peterborough Folk Music Society.
This review may be reprinted with prior permission and attribution.

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