It was on January 18th, 2011 where An American Legendary Musician was inducted into The Mississippi’s Musician’s Hall of Fame. A Man who’s roots began in a home town he left to serve in The United States Navy
. A Man who came from Pontotoc, Mississippi
that created a path with love, integrity and inspiration. An upholder with many talents that encouraged those in the music industry to walk with him in his path. A Man who we know – his name is Delaney Bramlett
Delaney created a path for others to walk with him – stemming from faith, family and several well known music artists that are friends – friends who became family. He inspired, encouraged and taught the meaning of love and wisdom in song to many.
Delaney as a singer and songwriter, placed morals and values in the gift of music to artists, making sure his message to them remained as a constant reminder – a reminder that God gave them a gift of music and it is a gift that only one can deliver to others.
Delaney became the inspiration to fly – opening the wings of all people who walked with him in his path – a path that suddenly became a road to his heart and the love of music he shared with Bonnie and friends along with their three daughters. A path of where courage took over to achieve An American Dream – changing it into a Legend in the Music Industry
. His three daughters, Michele, Suzanne and Bekka, reflect on precious, sweet memories of their Dad and Mom – memories that surface to their hearts and souls every day – memories of their beautiful life growing up as the daughters of Delaney and Bonnie Bramlett. All three continue to thank God for being blessed to have Delaney and Bonnie – their Mom and Dad.
When I spoke to Michele about her Dad, the pride and honor she holds deep within her heart for her parents took me down Delaney’s Path. Suzanne holds a key to her parent’s heart and wisdom, reflections of the happiness her parents gave her sisters and herself. When Bekka took honor in person to accept Delaney’s prestigious and honorable acceptance into the Mississippi’s Musician’s Hall of Fame – her speech was as if she spoke through her Father’s spirit – a spirit that lives. There it was – a path that never ends. Here is a glimpse of Delaney’s path he created – a path that lives today:
We’ve heard Guitarist and Singer Eric Clapton
mention Delaney Bramlett several times, even in a book he wrote. Clapton took place walking with Delaney through a path Delaney inspired Clapton to walk when he joined Delaney, Bonnie and Friends
– including being on tour with them in the late 1960’s. Through every step, Delaney gave the torch of wisdom to Clapton and enjoyed producing and co-writing songs for Clapton’s solo album. Still to this day, Eric Clapton talks about Delaney Bramlett and continues to speak about the man who pushed him to sing along with teaching him the art of music in Rock.
Bramlett produced King Curtis’ last LP, which had two hit singles: “Teasin’” and “Lonesome Long Way from Home”. He also taught Beatle’s member George Harrison
to play slide guitar, as Harrison also learned from Delaney’s wisdom that resulted Harrison to reach into inspirational words from Delaney. Those words are in Harrison’s hit, “My Sweet Lord”. Bramlett wrote, recorded, or appeared on stage with several performers. To name a few: Joe Cocker, Jimi Hendrix, Janis Joplin,Billy Preston, John Lennon, The Everly Brothers, Spooner Oldham, Steve Cropper,and Billy Burnette.
Members of the Friends appeared in concert and/or recorded with Bramlett on Friends albums includes Clapton, Harrison, Russell, Curtis, Duane Allman, Gregg
Allman, Dave Mason, Rita Coolidge, Carl Radle, Jim Gordan, Bobby Whitelock, Jim Keltner, Bobby Keys,and Gram Parsons – the list continues in Delaney’s path – a path that also includes Joey Cooper,Mac Davis, and Jackie DeShannon
The Bramlett’s “Never Ending Song of Love” appears on the soundtracks of Movies “RV” and “A Good Year”. The song “Let It Rain” that became a hit was also a song Delaney co-wrote with Eric Clapton. For those of you who love Jerry Lee Lewis, Delaney Bramlett was a duet performer on the album called Last Man Standing, singing and playing his guitar in the song Lost Highway.
Bramlett also co-wrote songs with Leon Russell and first wife Bonnie Bramlett the song Superstar that was recorded by New Haven Connecticut Natives – The Carpenters. He topped his magic in his love of music on the Billboard Hot 100 pop singles and Easy Listening chart that went above gold to his fans. The same song was also honorably sung and recorded by Usher, Sonic Youth and Luther Vandross – a song that has become popular amongst others as well.
Talking to Michele Bramlett – she emphasized her parent’s list continues of many artists who looked up to them, sang with them and became a part of their family. Delaney’s path continues to be The Path of an American Legend – a man who served his country, created a family with Bonnie, raised three beautiful and very talented daughters and continually reached into his faith, a faith that gave his gift of music and wisdom to many. In 2008, Delaney passed on, now walking another path. But he leaves the path he created in a CD called A New Kind of Blues from his own label called Magnolia Gold Records.
Several artists, family and friends continue to walk Delaney Bramlett’s Path – from the words of his three daughters you will find their Father is now telling the world they never will walk alone. For this reason and many others – Delaney & Bonnie Bramlett – The Legends of American Rock and Roll, the parents of three daughters, the leaders to musicians who became inspired by them, The American Way and Dream – Americans and Musicians alike will take honor in Delaney’s Path when Delaney Bramlett someday will be in The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.
Through Delaney and Bonnie Bramlett’s daughters – here is what they are proud to say as they too walk in the path their father created, a path that leads to song at heart, wisdom of truth and a gift that never ends. The love of a Father and Mother surfaced in my conversation with Michele – she defined the meaning of FAMILY – Father And Mother I Love You. In the Bramlett daughter’s words:
Daughter Michele’s letter to MMHF:
Dear Mr. Brewer and the Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame,
I am deeply honored with your nomination and induction of my Dad, Delaney Bramlett. This award means so much to our family. It truly is the recognition of my Dads’ artistic vision and musical achievements and you can only imagine how important it is to me, his daughter…
Dad created some of the most distinctive and unique music in the world and everybody wanted to play with him. He was a prolific songwriter, a storyteller, an amazing musician, a teacher, a mentor to so many.
He gave people their “wings”…and now, YOU, Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame, are giving him his.
Fly Dad…it’s YOUR turn!
We (my sisters and I) grew up in a world of beautiful chaos. Whether it be ‘round the kitchen table, on the front porch, or through our bedroom walls, Dads’ music filled our hearts.
He was a great man. I close my eyes and I see Dad. I see his purdy face. I see him standing here, humbly accepting this award. I feel his gratitude. I feel his nervousness. I feel his love and his big beautiful smile, lighting up the room.
Yayyyyyyy, Dad! We are clappin’….real loud and hard! We are so very proud of you, Dad….SO proud to be “your girls”…We miss you sooooooooo much, Dad.
As my sisters and I proudly accept this award on behalf of our Dad, we want to express our love and gratitude to his fans.
We thank you, Mississippi Musicians Hall of Fame, from the bottom of our big ‘ol Bramlett hearts…
Thank you, Mr. Brewer, hall of fame inductees, nominating committee, and everybody else who made this dream a reality.
Thank you, Mississppi, for loving our Dad…
Thank you so much and God bless you all.
Daughter Suzanne quotes in this article:
“Well I was about 4 or 5 and would just sit in the floor and hug on dad’s or mom’s jean legs while they were rockin’ to the music. One day I sat down and grabbed hold of a jean leg. Well, I looked up and it was Eric’s leg. I got so embarrassed that I jumped up and ran into the room” – Suzaznne tells as she chuckles on these memories.“All those jean legs look the same.
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I remember Eric gave dad an old english cab and dad could drive on the other side of the car – never mind the other side of the road (we thought that was so cool). So we kids turned that cab into our own little playhouse, “fort”. Our matilija house was named the “Wishing Well” house because it had a lot of wishes made in that wishing well by a lot of legendary people. I am so proud to be the daughter of greatness. I am forever grateful to our parents who loved and “rocked” us all of our lives.
I love and miss you Dad and Mamo! I love you Mom. Our dream is to now get our parents inducted into the RRHOF!!! We are very excited about the documentary and can’t wait for the world to see what we know!”
Daughter Bekka quotes in the article:
“God, where would I start? Living in a house full of laughter, Jesus and music 24/7, it’s kind of impossible to sum up the life of a child of Delaney & Bonnie Bramlett! As a kid only knowing that lifestyle, I find myself so much more impressed and appreciative, as I age. I remember recognizing the Beatles on my friends’ lunch boxes and saying “I know those guys! They’re asleep on our couches! They’re really nice, have funny accents and don’t wash their clothes as much as Mamo washes ours!” Just knowing that whomever came to Our home to write or record, be it George Harrison, John Lennon, Thumbs Carlisle, Roger Miller, or Jerry Lee Lewis, etc.etc, would, INEVITABLY stay the night, week, sometimes even for months at a time, let me know that We had the most cozy and Welcome home in the world! Mamo, (Daddy’s Mama and our ANGEL) made them all feel like her own) That meant a lot to so many, running a crazy Rock n Roll life. Maybe even saved some,- so I’m told. I’m forever amazed at the Talent and teachings of my Parents and what they’ve accomplished and Shared with not only the music lovers of the world, but the music Makers. Being a musician, myself, now for Over 25 years, I must say, a week doesn’t go by without one of our Heroes telling me a story of Love and Thanks for what my parents, Delaney and Bonnie, did for them just by being themselves. They share with me how truly important it was that Delaney & Bonnie incorporated Gospel music , as well as true Country music into the Rock n Roll world, and how my parents made it COOL, and possible to be wild- hearted and Spiritually Grounded! Delaney & Bonnie are more and highly respected – and they remain live Forever amongst their Fans, Peers, Friends and Family. The Legends of Rock & Roll – yes they deserve induction into The Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. This is straight from my heart and I’m by no means alone in Knowing this! This is why our Sister, Michele Bramlett, Dads First Born Child – is working Tirelessly for, not just for Suzanne Bramlett (Second Born daughter) and I (the Baby sister), but for the whole World. And he (Dad) was and will always be our whole world – even to the musicians that live today who learned, recorded and worked with our Dad. As our sister Michele said at our Daddy’s Funeral “BRAMLETT BLOOD RUNS DEEP” – It Sure Does. This is why She won’t Give up on Her Movement to share the Legacy of our Father DELANEY BRAMLETT and his forever Soul mate BONNIE BRAMLETT – our Dad and Mom – AKA DELANEY & BONNIE (thank God!)”
The Family of Delaney Bramlett told me about Mamo, their Grandmother. She too is an important role model in the Bramlett family – after all she is The Mother of Delaney Bramlett – Grandmother to the Bramlett Daughters of Delaney and Bonnie.
Michele Bramlette told me “Mamo stepped in as a natural Mom to all the musicians that came to our home, even stood at our house for weeks or months. But all of them, no matter what, became part of our Bramlett home and family”.
Learning about Mamo when I spoke to Michele and quoted Suzanne and Bekka’s statements in the article – Mamo welcomed all friends of Delaney and Bonnie Bramlett with open arms as part of their family and for the Love of her Children too. Mamo is the Woman who gave Birth to an American Legend – a man named Delaney Bramlett – the man that created a path for so many people, family, friends and recording artists.