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Delbert McClinton & Dick50

Acquired Taste (New West)

Reviewed by Margaret Moser, Fri., Sept. 18, 2009

Texas Platters

Delbert McClinton & Dick50

Acquired Taste (New West)

Delbert McClinton is Texas' roadhouse Renais-sance man with the King Midas voice, turning golden anything he sings. The three-time Grammy winner has been riding high on his third wind since 2001's Nothing Personal reminded everyone what a badass he is (as did 2005's Cost of Living). For this, his umpteenth studio album, he's back in style, and what a neat trick it is that this party album doesn't tread new territory yet conjures up juke-joint weepers ("Never Saw It Comin'," "Starting a Rumor"), bluesy jumpers ("People Just Love to Talk," "Mama's Little Baby," "Willie"), jazzy interludes ("Until Then"), and funky roots-rockers ("Do It") with such unparalleled Taste. Part of that is McClinton's voice, genuine cowhide vocals branded with Texas through and through. That voice is a little ragged, not as whiskey smooth as in younger years, yet poured over McClinton's double-shot band Dick50, it packs a wallop. Produced by Don Was, the disc also features Austin's late Stephen Bruton on the tear-in-my-beer sentiment "Can't Nobody Say I Didn't Try." Acquired Taste is 100 proof that you need not be the youngest or hippest thing on the block to be totally happening.

***

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