The Willy DeVille Acoustic Trio - Spanish Harlem (R. Johnson)
From the album "The Willy DeVille Acoustic Trio in Berlin" (2002)
Label: Eagle Records
Willy DeVille's website.
The Willy DeVille Acoustic Trio
Born William Borsey (b. 1950), Willy DeVille has become much more of a celebrity in Europe than in his native America. Yet it was there that he performed groundbreaking work and became influential in the rise of several new musical styles in the 1970's and 1980's. DeVille, of Pequot (native Americans), Basque, and Irish descent, is a flamboyant stage presence.
Europe vs. America
Founded in 1974, his band Mink DeVille became very popular in the late 1970's and early 1980's. Then in 1987 he began performing under his own name, changing his musical directions on the go.
Recording in New Orleans and Los Angeles, he added Zydeco, Tex Mex, Salsa, and Spanish-Americana to his Punk Rock and even French chanson influences. Multi-talented DeVille's most influential albums became hits in Europe first, some of them even sold only as imports in America, being recorded and produced there. And for a long while, he performed exclusively in Europe without having a record deal in America at all.
The track "Spanish Harlem" from "The Willy DeVille Acoustic Trio in Berlin" is the only live recording featured on this DALI compilation. It features a double bass, a piano, and DeVille's vocals. The recording especially focuses on DeVille's voice; warm, deep, and full of typical DeVille details.