Texas has produced some great Blues-rock guitarists, and Chris keeps that strong tradition going. Born in San Antonio, Chris moved to Austin as a youth, and played his jazz influenced Stratocaster around the local club scene. He saw Stevie Ray Vaughan at one of the last hometown gigs before he got his big break, and when Chris joined Bobby Mack and the Night Train, his playing turned towards the Blues. Chris appeared on the Night Train album and when the band broke up, he joined The Bad Boys, and a self-titled album was released in 1986. The band was very popular locally and Chris was also playing a with lot of jazz outfits, but personal problems held him back until he got serious about his music and formed The Chris Duarte Group with Jeff Hodges and John Jordan in 1992. The power trio is Chris’s favoured vehicle, and all his best work has come from fronting a funky drummer and a sensitive bassman.
The breakthrough album came in 1994 with ‘Texas Sugar/Strat Magic’, followed up by ‘Tailspin Headwhack’ a couple of years later. A solid Blues foundation to his style shows that Stevie Ray was an obvious influence on Chris’s playing, as was another Texan Johnny Winter
, but his early jazz grounding in the work of Coltrane and Miles Davis also sees Chris take his solos to the outer limits sometimes. While commercial success has not come his way, the last decade has seen seven well received albums and huge respect paid by fellow artists, not least Joe Bonamassa
. Chris has been involved in many collaborations which have allowed him to explore his wide range of styles and he has released two guitar teaching DVDs. Chris’s album ‘My Soul Alone’ was released in early 2013, and he is always a spectacular live act, so you if you are a fan of expansive, free-flowing guitar, don’t miss the opportunity to see his band play.
Superb live performance of Chris’s Bottle Blues;