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World Music CD Reviews North American

Charlie Musselwhite

By Paula Kirman
Published March 20, 2007

Delta Hardware
Real World

Delta Hardware is the sound of the Mississippi Delta, where Charlie Musselwhite grew up. With his unmistakable vocal and harmonica style, Musselwhite brings listeners down south for a taste of the blues. The results are raw, electric, and full of passion. Lyrically, Musselwhite covers a reasonably broad range, from singing about partying and good times to engaging in serious social commentary about the devastation caused by Hurricane Katrina. Musselwhite is a blues legend who’s influenced and worked with musicians as diverse as Muddy Waters, Bonnie Raitt and Ben Harper over the years. But Delta Hardware is all him, from the first soul-drenched note to the last. Backed up by an excellent band that knows how to pound a blues groove home, Musselwhite’s presence is so strong that the album, though beautifully recorded, retains much of the energy of a live concert. This is hardcore blues from a musician who’s earned his legendary status.