Darrell Mansfield Band
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Darrell Mansfield Band

Yorba Linda, California, United States | INDIE

Yorba Linda, California, United States | INDIE
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By James Curt Byrum

Since 1969 Darrell Mansfield has been in pursuit of a creating a sound all his own, yet he has kept the foundation of his music undeniably the blues and the underpinning of his life, his faith in Christ. He has played with some of the all-time great musicians in rock, rhythm, and blues. He is a Hohner Harmonica Hall of fame inductee and in 2009, he was inducted into Blues Hall of Fame: Ambassador of California. He is an encyclopedia of music history.

Influenced by such greats as Elmore James and Jeff Beck, it’s no wonder why he plays with the heart of the harp and the soul of the guitar. He has played beside Jimmy Hall, the late Joe Turner, Eddie Van Halen , Jon Bon Jovi , Richie Sambora , Billy Idol, Ted Nuggent , Rick Derringer , Five Blind Boy’s , Earl Slick, and Billy Sheehan. While he has explored everything from blues based rock and delta blues to hard rock and southern rock, he has been a mainstay in Gospel Blues for nearly three decades. He is a forthright Christian and an advocate for orphans, prisoners and those suffering with mental illness.

The unique thing about Darrell, is that he has never wavered from his musical instincts. He grew up listening to all the great guitar heroes, Jimi Hendrix was his favorite. It wasn’t the guitar where he excelled; it was his harmonica that set him apart. He has a very intense sound, mirroring the guitar note for note. If you close your eyes, you can hardly tell the difference between the guitar tones and his harmonic aptitude. His solos often leave you wondering how he can manipulate the resonance like he does. The same goes for matching the B3, his vibrato hits the nerve of the blues right on time. It is mesmerizing. Darrell has been nominated for The 2009 Harmonica player of the year by the SF Blues Society. Around here, they call him, “The blond bomber of the blues”.

I recently spoke with him as he recovered from two events that are near to his heart: that being harmonicas and mental health. He had just headlined at the Sacramento Blues Society where he was backed by the Used Blues Band. He was amazing! He also performed at NAMI walk (National Alliance for Mental Illness) annual fundraiser. Darrell is a compassionate person, putting his money where his harp is. Darrell considers people to be the assets we can’t afford to lose.

He has never made excuses for playing gospel music, because he has lived out his faith in action. Darrell recounts, a time when B.B. King once told him, “I always wanted to play gospel music, but the churches wouldn’t let me!” Darrell laughed and responded, “I know what you mean Mr. King.”

Darrell suffers from depressive disorder and has tried suicide three times, yet has turned it into a positive narrative to encourage others who suffer as he does. His life’s work spans from all areas of music and so does his ministry. He is an advocate for mental health issues, stating that we are three parts: spirit, mind and body and we must respect each part of ourselves and take care of each.

I asked him the reasons why he thought that mental illness is often ignored in the church and society? He responded candidly, “It is the “dirty little secret” because people are desperately afraid to be honest about it.” Darrell calls it like it is! He continued, “I would say to some church leaders, they need to wake up and realize that mental illness is just like physical illness; it needs to be treated by a doctor. It is also important to fellowship in group therapy. Shame on them who think they can just pray it away.” He spares no one in his truthfulness, not even his own tribe!

So I asked, “What do you think would help this circumstance change towards a more compassionate direction?

He responded, “Our Bible colleges and Seminaries need to train potential pastors on how to distinguish the causes of these mental disorders — they are not always spiritual in nature, but most often have biochemical factors that can be helped with appropriate medication and therapy. Those who suffer from emotional and mental disorders need friendship, love, acceptance and understanding — just like everyone else. It is time for the church came clean and started treating the mentally ill within its walls with friendship and compassion, instead of rejecting them.”

By involving himself in people’s lives, he has set an example for other musicians to follow. He is active in supporting NAMI, ministers to prisoners, and regularly visits the handicapped orphanage in Moldova. Darrell is a great choice for Blues Ambassador.
- BluesFestivalGuide.com


Darrell Mansfield's new CD and DVD release "People Get Ready" is regarded as the new "best of" his most outstanding hits. This full-length (80 minute) live album and concert video, performed at the sold-out OC Pavilion, features the best arrangements, best musicians and most amazing stage performances of the Darrell Mansfield Band in the past decade. See www.DarrellMansfield.com, www.ReverbNation.com/DarrellMansfieldBand, www.Google.com or www.YouTube.com for more.

Darrell Mansfield's soulful voice and harmonica have amazed and inspired audiences worldwide for over 30 years. A renown musician and songwriter, he has released more than 30 albums and is recognized as one of the world's greatest harmonica players. Over the years Darrell has recorded and toured heavily in the US and Europe as well as the Middle East, Asia and Australia.

Wikipedia says it best, "Mansfield's live performance is a must see and hear for blues, rock and harmonica players worldwide."

Darrell has released many critically acclaimed albums and has contributed vocals and harmonica to many other artists’ recordings including Eddie Van Halen, Jon Bon Jovi, Adam Again and Loverboy. He has also played alongside Jimmy Hall, the late Joe Turner, Richie Sambora, Billy Idol, Ted Nugent, Five Blind Boys, Earl Slick, Rick Derringer and Billy Sheehan.

Darrell excels in every genre from delta blues to hard rock and southern rock, and has been a forerunner in gospel blues and rock for over three decades.
- Son Records


Discography

2009-People Get Ready CD/DVD
2009-Life's Highway
2009-The Best of Darrell Mansfield Vol 2
2008-Born to be Wild
2007-Shades
2004-The Best of Darrell Mansfield, Vol 1
2001-Darrell Mansfield LIVE
2000-Soul'd Out
1999-Darrell Mansfiled blues Band Live in Europe
1998-First Love Video Project
1998-Last Chance Boogie
1997-Crossroads
1997-Delta Blues
1995-Into the Night
1995-Tribute to Dan Smith "The Lord's House"
1995-Mansfield and Company
1994-Collection
1994-The Blues Night
1993-Shack of Peasants (2 volumn set)
1993-Slow Burn
1992-Give Him Your Blues
1992-Get Ready (Re-release)
1991-Live At Flevo
1991-Blues with a Feelin'
1990-Trimmed and Burnin'
1988-Darrell Mansfield Band Live at Calvary Chapel
1985-Revelation
1983-The Vision
1983-Darrell Mansfield Live
1980-Get Ready
1979-Higher Power
1976-Gentle Faith

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Bio

Darrell Mansfield's soulful voice and harmonica have amazed and inspired audiences worldwide for over 30 years. A renown musician and songwriter, he has released more than 30 albums and is recognized as one of the world's greatest harmonica players. Over the years Darrell has recorded and toured heavily in the US and Europe as well as the Middle East, Asia and Australia.

Wikipedia says it best, "Mansfield's live performance is a must see and hear for blues, rock and harmonica players worldwide."

Darrell has released many critically acclaimed albums and has contributed vocals and harmonica to many other artists’ recordings including Eddie Van Halen, Jon Bon Jovi, Adam Again and Loverboy. He has also played alongside Jimmy Hall, the late Joe Turner, Richie Sambora, Billy Idol, Ted Nugent, Five Blind Boys, Earl Slick, Rick Derringer and Billy Sheehan.

Darrell excels in every genre from delta blues to hard rock and southern rock, and has been a forerunner in gospel blues and rock for over three decades.