Press Play: Danny Click and the Hell Yeahs! recorded LIVE!
‘Danny Click and the Hell Yeahs! – Captured Live!’
Singer-songwriter-guitarist Danny Click arrived in Marin from Austin, Texas, a half dozen years ago and has done more to invigorate the local music scene than anybody in recent memory.
The 53-year-old Indiana-born rocker has become one of Marin’s most popular performers in that time, attracting legions of Clickhead fans. In recent years, he has assembled a cast of some of our finest rock and blues musicians in a band he calls the Hell Yeahs. This debut CD was recorded one night last September at the 142 Throckmorton Theatre in Mill Valley.
As the band’s tall-drink-a-water front man, Click sings in a dry Texas tenor and shows off some serious guitar chops forged in the competitive fires of Austin, where being good ain’t good enough.
For this show, the Hell Yeahs featured the rock solid rhythm section of drummer Kevin Hayes, seasoned by years with Robert Cray, and bassist Don Bassey, who takes a vocal turn on Delbert McClinton’s blues shuffle “Livin’ It Up.”
Mike Emerson holds down keyboard duties and soars on organ, violinist Adrienne Biggs Tennant and cellist Rebecca Roudman form a scintillating string section and Lynn Asher and Tracy Blackman hold nothing back on harmony vocals.
In a guest spot, Rancho Nicasio’s Angela Strehli, the Queen of Texas Blues, turns in a nasty rendition of Elmore James’ “Stranger Blues.”
Click wrote five of the dozen songs on the album, including “Wait My Turn,” one of the highlights of his critically acclaimed studio CD “Life Is a Good Place,” which spent 10 months on the country, pop and Americana radio charts in 2011.
Click includes a selection of seven tasteful covers, including Steve Earle’s snarling “West Nashville,” Randy Weeks slow burner “Can’t Let Go,” Eddie Burns’ high speed blues “When I Get Drunk,” the jangling guitar tune “Fool’s Parade” by Andy Van Dyke and Tom Petty’s fighting ballad “Swingin’.”
Props to engineer Mat Cohen for recording and mixing a record that sounds almost like being there. The independent album was financed by a Kickstarter campaign. A major label has shown interest in releasing it, so for the time being it’s only for sale at shows. “Captured Live” manages to capture the sound of a band that has become a genuine Marin County phenomenon.
Buy It: “Danny Click and the Hell Yeahs Captured Live,” $15, available at Danny Click shows.
(now available on iTunes, CD Baby and Amazon)
— Paul Liberatore
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