|Baby Boy performing with Daddy Rich|
Daddy Rich .... Clarksdale s multi talented musician has been a favorite for crowds for quite a while now.
We first met Daddy several years back during one of our visits to Clarksdale. He was the host for the Thursday night jam, and our friends Kim and Lala were trying to encourage our young son to sign up for the jam. With their encouragement ... he did and wow what a great experience that turned out to be. What we didn't know at the time was that Daddy was an instructor at the Delta Blues Museum. He was awesome with our son. That experience I am sure gave Nathan the confidence that any young man needs when you are learning your craft as a performer.
The Delta Blues Museum has a wonderful program called the Arts and Education Program that is in place to keep the music tradition of the Blues alive. Young and Old alike can sign up and pick an instrument and play. Many great performers our there now went thru this program. Daddy has been at the Blues Museum for 8 years now.
Daddy KNOWS how to get the crowd going and his energy level is so high that its contagious..... you just wanna get out there and juke. We loved him and bought a CD from him that night. I thought that we were gonna wear it out listening to it on the way home. All songs were written by him as well as performed and arranged. Of course probably one our favorites is his song "Clarksdale" ...... its a HUGE crowd pleaser.. and I think a favorite of Bill Lucketts also ...!
Going back as often as we do ... I am always curious as to what changes are occurring for him. Several things have happened since that first encounter... Probably the coolest one for me being a big fan, was when he was highlighted on the Gene Simmons show. Yep, believe it .. when I phoned call all over town to announce that everyone had to watch that nights episode because my friends were going to be on it.
When I decided to do this blog about Daddy I did an interview via the internet and asked some questions... first off I was curious as to how he balances everything out in his life. Daddy is married to lovely Rachel and they have a busy young toddler. This was his response to that... that it is VERY hard to balance being a musician and a family man. And that he always leans towards what is best for his family... which he says speaks of his lack of huge success on the music side.
On his web site, which I have always frequented... I have seen statements like "Daddy Rich is Poor".... Ok.. Im gonna disagree...
What I do know is this. He has a support system that is unbelievable. Other musicians have stated to me that he is probably one of the most talented delta locals out there performing today... He is innovative and different. That speaks volumes. Because you don't wanna sound like Muddy Waters or BB King... I hate to hear someone up there doing something that has already been done. He is not afraid to be different and unique... and that Daddy is where eventually your success is gong to come from. I know its been said, but $$ isn't everything... and your journey is still in progress.
I was also curious as to who his earlier influences were. This was his response:
"A big influence of mine when I was younger i'd have to say was Chris Cornell. I've always admired his vocal ability and soul. There are many others, the list is long. I used to be a big Smashing Pumpkins fan and a Radiohead fan as well. My biggest influence now is still the people out there going at it hard trying to make it in the music biz. Its much tougher than most people can imagine. I have much respect for people these days who are really out there "doing it".
Daddy has now moved to Oxford... again... thinking of his son and wife and that there might be more opportunities for Jack. Right now as with any working musician he is just trying to pay the bills and playing what gigs come his way. So if your down in the delta and diggin his sound... Buy his CD! Believe me... its worth it, not one song on there is bad. Their all good. Daddy is an original and that is what music is all about. I will forever be grateful for the confidence he gave to our son. Who is NOW in the delta and running sound with Walt at GZ.
And I think that Daddy was the link in that chain that helped get him there. For that ... I say thank you Daddy Rich!