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Friday

Chris Duarte Grooving in '92


I recently attended a brew fest featuring an SRV tribute band from Texas (whose name I won't mention). The performance was way over the top and sloppy, with the brim adorned guitar player blowing his entire load on every tune. Then we get the little talk about how he was a good buddy of SRV back in the day-- blah, blah, blah... What a hose job!

According to the Youtube user who uploaded the above Chris Duarte clip, it's from a Canadian TV show in '92. With SRV a little over one year gone, Chris Duarte was already doing that thing very well. It would be easy to write off Duarte as an SRV clone, but instead I think there was a collective dynamic of Texas bluesmen in the 80's who were simultaneously evolving a form of playing which blended Hendrix flair with classic T-Bone Walker and Albert King. Obviously, SRV busted into the mainstream first, and arguably did it best. However...

Other players like Ronnie Earl, Charlie Baty and Duke Robillard were also forging ahead with contemporary electric blues guitar interpretations. Although Duarte is clearly cooking in SRV's kitchen here, he does so with plenty of his own passion, clean attack and good taste.

So let's keep that torch burning, but don't accept just any substitutes kids!
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