I first wrote about Delbert in a post of October 27, 2008, discussing his "One of the Fortunate Few" and "Cost of Living" cds. As a genre, McClinton's music has been described as blues, country, honky-tonk and rock. Since he's pushing 70 and not selling a lot of cds, I doubt that any of these genres are in a rush to claim him. If Wiki is correct, it appears that his albums have had the most success on the blues charts. His latest album, "Acquired Taste" was released in August of 2009 so I've had it now for over 10 months. It contains 14 tracks and I haven't tired of listening to it yet. OK, I do play some songs a lot more than others but that's true of almost all albums. On a cd player, I generally just play it straight through since there are no bad tracks. When time is short I sometimes just pick out a few songs to play on my laptop. My preferences there become obvious since I-Tunes counts the number of plays for each song. Some of my favorite tracks are:
"People Just Love to Talk", written by Delbert, Kevin McKendree and Rob McNelley, has everything, clever lyrics, great instrumentation and a sense of humor. This uptempo song gives us a few scenarios about certain ladies whose men haven't been seen no more. The chorus repeats the title twice followed by a suggestion that "if you don't know somethin', then don't say nothin' ", concluding "People Just Love to Talk". I like the Sax by Dennis Taylor during the chorus and before the cool bridge about people "Yukking it up" so that "It's hard to make a distinction between fact and fiction for sure". Delbert has a way with saying certain words. Listen to how he pronounces "scenarios", "police" and the timing when he sings "well no" after the police captain asks the blind woman if she saw it happen.
"Cherry Street", by Delbert, Gary Nicholson and Kevin McKendree is another funky, bluesy track. The chorus tells us to "Expect the unexpected to furnish the thrill ..." Last verse - "women and alcohol a dangerous mix, too much of either and you're in a fix, I spent all night at the emergency, while they were patching up poor pitiful me". I don't know the significance of the title. There is no mention of "Cherry Street" in the lyrics. 4th Avenue in Downtown Nashville at one time was called Cherry Street but Delbert's from Texas so it might be some street there.
"Starting a Rumor", written by Delbert, Gary Nicholson and Guy Clark, is a bluesy ballad about a guy hoping to win a girl or get his girl back. He sings "I'm starting a rumor about you and me, that we've been seen out doing some crazy things ... how we carry on like lovesick fools". People will think we're together so we will be.
"Wouldn't You Think" (She Should've Been Here By Now) by Delbert, Gary and Benmont Tench, is a sad tale of a lonely stood up man at a restaurant who tries to convince himself that his girl will show up. He's "trying hard not to watch the clock" or stare at the door. "The bartender he's looking at me, with a certain bit of sympathy, something tells me he's seen this scene before".
"Do It" is a solo writing effort by Delbert in a song that begins with the singer throwing out his cheatin' lyin' woman. When she said "Honey if you think I can't find me another man honey you must be crazy", his response is "Do It. You got a real good idea honey you better get to it". Cool again.
"Willie" by Delbert & Gary tells us that "everybody needs a little lovin' now and then. Willie finally found him a woman and she's gettin' the best of him" - and giving the listeners a few laughs.
In "Until Then" by Delbert, Kevin & Tom Hambridge, the pace is slow for the verses when he's blue, tryin to kill time til he sees her again. The tempo picks up in the chorus as he pretends "he's struttin' it up and kickin' it down the street, you on my arm for everyone to see".
In "Out of My Mind" by Delbert, Gary & Kevin, the guy can't forget, can't let go, so he's looking for a way out of his mind. He's tried the drink and the smoke and every wrong thing he knows, but any good feeling is only temporary.
"Never Saw It Comin' " written by Delbert, Gary & Kevin tells of a clueless guy who didn't recognize the signs his girl was leaving til it was too late.
There have been no hits from this album which is no surprise. There have been very few radio hits for Delbert in his career. Luckily for those of us fortunate enough to know about his music (some of the fortunate few?), Delbert is undeterred by radio rejection and continues to make great new music.