Support Local Journalism, Join the SA Current Press Club.

Capitol city soul 

W.C. Clark
Capitol city soul

As John Lennon once put it, the blues is a chair: a functional piece of architecture that's sturdy, unadorned, and made for sitting. With that in mind, no one on the Austin music scene has done more to maintain the condition of that chair than W.C. Clark.

An Austin blues fixture since the 1950s, when he played bass for T.D. Bell's band, the Cadillacs, Clark mentored an endless parade of blues disciples such as Angela Strehli, Lou Ann Barton, and the Vaughan brothers. It was in the mid-'70s, while working with Stevie Ray Vaughan in the Triple Threat Revue, that Clark co-wrote the soulful shuffle "Cold Shot," later to become one of Vaughan's most indelible tracks.

In recent years, Clark's legendary status in Austin (where he's known as "the Godfather") has extended to a national audience. In 2002, he won widespread

W.C. Clark
(CD Release show)

Saturday, July 17
Luna Fine Music Club
6740 San Pedro
acclaim for his Alligator Records debut, From Austin With Soul. Clark's new disc, Deep In The Heart, finds Clark in Memphis R&B mode, covering the Stax Records classic "You Left The Water Running" (with vocal help from Marcia Ball) and rasping it up like Sam Moore on horn-driven tracks like "Stronger Than You Need To Be," "I Didn't Know the Meaning of Pain," and "Cold Blooded Lover."

Throughout the disc, Clark's guitar playing is clean, economical, tasteful, and invariably in the pocket. At 64, he conveys ease without complacency, professionalism that's never pro forma. He's been carrying the torch for Austin blues for nearly half a century and doesn't look like he'll be stopping anytime soon. •

By Gilbert Garcia

Support Local Journalism.
Join the San Antonio Current Press Club

Local journalism is information. Information is power. And we believe everyone deserves access to accurate independent coverage of their community and state. Our readers helped us continue this coverage in 2020, and we are so grateful for the support.

Help us keep this coverage going in 2021. Whether it's a one-time acknowledgement of this article or an ongoing membership pledge, your support goes to local-based reporting from our small but mighty team.

Join the San Antonio Press Club for as little as $5 a month.

Read the Digital Print Issue

October 6, 2021

View more issues


Join SA Current Newsletters

Sign Up Now

Subscribe now to get the latest news delivered right to your inbox.


© 2021 San Antonio Current

Website powered by Foundation