Cost of Living

“Dependable” is a good word for DELBERT MCCLINTON’s music. After thirty years and eighteen albums, there aren’t a whole lot of surprises; few artists have stuck so tenaciously to their guns. Here’s why: Mc-Clinton’s seamless splicing of blues, rock and roll, and country, driven by a fixation with roadhouse R&B, is without peer. Lubbock-born and Fort Worth- raised, McClinton was first noticed for his formidable harmonica skills, then for his powerhouse vocals, and finally, for his songwriting acumen. You get all three on Cost of Living (New West). Brokenhearted from the git-go, the funny and bittersweet “One of the Fortunate Few” kicks things off, then leads into the redneck-wry “Right to Be Wrong.” There’s a Jimmy Reed cover and even a soulful slow dance, “Your Memory, Me, and the Blues,” which you have to love for the title alone.

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