Delbert McClinton and Glen Clark’s new album, Blind, Crippled And Crazy, is a great mix of country rock and blues. Running through many of these tracks is the theme of aging, looking back, acknowledging changes (such as “Been Around A Long Time,” “More And More, Less And Less,” “Sure Feels Good” and “Good As I Feel Today”). But this is certainly not a somber look back, or even a heavily nostalgic collection of songs. Rather this is a fun album, with plenty of positive vibes and an underlying message to enjoy your life (no matter what point of it you’re experiencing now). Sure, there are some serious songs, but this is a truly enjoyable collection of music. My favorites are “More And More, Less And Less,” “Good As I Feel Today” and “If I Could Be Your Lover.” There is really only one track that’s kind of weak (“Somebody To Love You”).
Blind, Crippled And Crazy kicks off with “Been Around A Long Time,” which has a fun country honky tonk rhythm. This is the first of several songs dealing one way or another with aging. “Some things just get better like fine wine/I ain’t old, but I’ve been around a long time.” The vocals have the perfect rough quality of someone who has been around and experienced a lot. I like these lines: “If you don’t do nothing you’re going to live to regret/You won’t have to live with what you can’t forget.” There is also some groovy work on piano by Bruce Katz. This song makes me feel I should have a beer in my hand. (Hmm, hang on…)
They follow that with another fun country rock tune, “Whoever Said It Was Easy.” This song has the hook line, “Whoever said it was easy/He ain’t in love with you.” But make no mistake, this is a love song. He sings, “But I’m in it for the long haul/I’m going to love you to the day I die.” This song also features some catchy stuff on guitar during its lead section.
“World Of Hurt” is much more in the blues vein. This is a really cool tune about what the blues express best – a love affair gone wrong, and the resulting pain. Here is a taste of the lyrics: “Every day more misery/Ever since you rejected me/You shook me off like a dirty shirt/And put me in a world of hurt/A world of hurt, a world of hurt/From heaven on earth to a world of hurt.” I love the moments when it builds to its chorus. Plus, I dig the harmonica by Glen Clark.
“More And More, Less And Less” is one of my favorites. It starts, “A lot of things I used to do I don’t do no more/I don’t play the game, and I don’t keep score/The rat race rhythm I’ve been living in has put me to the test/These days I need more and more less and less.” This one is in a similar vein to Bob Dylan’s “Things Have Changed.” Delbert McClinton provides some really nice work on harmonica. And I love the electric guitar by Bob Britt.
“Sure Feels Good” is a very cool song with a great vibe and groove. I particularly love the way they draw out the line, “It sure feels good being me.” You totally believe them – and hell, it sure feels good hearing them sing it. This is another with the theme of getting older, gaining wisdom – looking at the world from a more relaxed, happier perspective. “I don’t have to be anybody I don’t want to be.” And of course this song features some more cool stuff on harmonica by Delbert McClinton.
“Good As I Feel Today” is another about taking stock of one’s life, and seeing things are pretty damn good. Check out these lines: “I don’t owe nobody nothing and nobody owes me/And the things I love the most, they all come for free/The more I see, the more I’m convinced/This whole world is never going to make sense/It don’t much matter anyway/As good as I feel today.” This song has a kind of slow, easy rock groove (like something by Little Feat). It’s a wonderful song, and it has some really nice work on keys by Bruce Katz.
This CD concludes with “If I Could Be Your Love,” which is one of my favorites. Something about the way it’s approached vocally reminds me of Greg Brown. This is a song in which he woos a woman by telling her all he’d do if he could be hers. I love the vibe. There is something very sexy, particularly in the instrumental section (listen to that wonderful violin by Stuart Duncan). And there are these beautiful lines: “If I could be your lover, I would give you my heart/I’d never hold back, not one little part/Be all in right from the start.”
CD Track List
- Been Around A Long Time
- Whoever Said It Was Easy
- Oughta Know
- World Of Hurt
- More And More, Less And Less
- Just When I Need You The Most
- Somebody To Love You
- Sure Feels Good
- Tell My Mama
- Peace In The Valley
- Good As I Feel Today
- If I Could Be Your Lover
Blind, Crippled And Crazy was released on June 18, 2013 on New West Records.