Blues artist McClinton to perform in Falls


In the year book of musical legacies, you're apt to find a new face. Next to Shooter Jennings, son of Waylon, and Hank Williams III, son of Hank Jr. and grandson of Hank Sr., and Django Walker, son of Jerry Jeff, you'll find the smiling mug of Clay McClinton, son of blues great Delbert McClinton. Destiny, it seemed, had a place for Clay, and it was right there in the musical embrace that his father found years ago. Just being around Dad and stuff, music's like, been my life, said McClinton in a phone interview from Nashville, where he was busy working in the recording studio.

McClinton, who'll perform tonight at the Iron Horse Pub, naturally grew up around the music business, thanks to his dad. He even worked as a roadie for his dad, setting up stages and just hanging out with the band. He has memories of before school (after a night out at a concert) falling asleep in my mom's arms.

But McClinton's interest in the guitar would take some doing. The Fort Worth-reared musician started playing the harmonica first, and would pick up guitar later, from his dad and his older brother, Monty. He didn't start getting serious about the guitar until he was 16.

In his teen years, he honed his chops with a few bands in Fort Worth before finding his way to Austin, where he would soak up the music scene in a city he calls a great place for a musician. I was in my late teens and early 20s I was thinking more about it (music) as a career. But McClinton had other things in mind, too, like heading to Europe to expand his cultural horizons. "We did play in lots of hostels" McClinton said. "I was there with two other guys. Alot of places we got to stay at for free."

That European experience allowed McClinton to mull over his creative side, and the four-month trip spawned the tune "Left My Baby Blue" on his debut CD, called "Out of the Blue" . The CD is a vehicle for his honky-tonk Delta blues and soulful rock sound. McClinton, after returning to the United States, would further his musical skills playing in the bands The Blues Project and Second Harvest in Flagstaff, AZ.

Now McClinton has settled in Nashville, the place to be for aspiring singer-songwriters, to focus on his musical career. McClinton's debut CD features songs that he penned or co-penned, and he hopes to refine his songwriting skills even more. Nashville is great for is co-writing with people and studio work, McClinton said, And he's definitely done plenty of that, though he wants to further his career in both realms of singing and songwriting. "I've really gotten into writing," he said, "If someone else wants to do one of my songs, it"s great. The writing is as equally important to me as the performing."


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