Delaney Bramlett's musical history spans three decades making it difficult to pinpoint in such a short space his contributions to the world of music. Known as a great songwriter, singer and musician, he has also been a mentor to some of the very best: Eric Clapton, George Harrison, J.J. Cale and Bobby Whitlock to name just a few.
From modest beginnings in Pontotoc, Mississippi, Delaney worked his way to the top, but not before a few side adventures. Life in his hometown wasn't for the budding music man and the only way to survive was to pick cotton or join the Armed Services. Delaney joined the Navy for three years and said goodbye to Mississippi. After his release from the Navy with Mississippi in his heart and his feet in Los Angeles he moved his family to be with him, where he has remained ever since.
Cliffie Stone recalls a young kid hanging around the studio watching everything. Delaney had already done demos for another Mississippian, Elvis Presley and played a cardboard box as a drum on a George Jones record. Living in Los Angeles now, he became a regular on the TV show Shindig as a Shindog, the house band. He was already busy writing with the likes of Joey Cooper, Mac Davis and Jackie DeShannon. Over the years, some of his songs have reached "standard" status such as "Superstar", "Never Ending Song of Love" and "Let It Rain, among others.
After Eric Clapton joined Delaney on tour he produced and co-wrote songs for Clapton's first solo LP. Due to contractual obligations he relinquished the writer credit to his then wife, Bonnie Bramlett enabling him to keep them in the family. Clapton still credits Delaney for pushing him to sing and teaching him the art.
George Harrison had his first slide bottle placed in his hand by Delaney who quickly taught George how to play slide and write a Gospel song. Out of that lesson came "My Sweet Lord".
The great attraction of Delaney is no doubt the raw soulful sounds and the voice that can tear your heart out with emotion no matter where you come from. Just being in a room with him makes you a part of his special style and music. Any lover of Soul has found joy and freedom in his style and still seek him out for arranging, producing and vocal work or....playing that indescribably spastic rhythm guitar.