Q&A with Paul Boddy & The SlideWinder Blues Band hits hard with its own brand of Texas and Chicago driven contemporary blues

"Music is like the great equalizer. It brings people together, no matter the shape, size, backgrounds, orientation or color. You rarely hear people fighting over music. It Is something that is shared, and it bonds us all together. I think we need more music everyday. More unity."

Paul Boddy & The SlideWinder Blues Band

Paul Boddy & The SlideWinder Blues Band hits hard with its own brand of Texas and Chicago driven contemporary blues. For those times when the 1, 4, 5 just isn't enough, the bands red blooded live shows are full of vigor and offer a sonic pallet indicative of the Mississippi Delta and New Orleans. Hailing from Doylestown, PA, a suburban town just north of Philadelphia, SlideWinder is comprised of several regulars of “The Every Tuesday Funk n’ Blues Jam”, a weekly open blues jam originally born within the venue walls of Puck Live in Doylestown and continues to this day at Club Havana in New Hope, PA.                                     (Photo: Paul Boddy & The SlideWinder Blues Band)

Now in its fifth year, SlideWinder isn’t just a band, it’s a community. Inductees of The PA Blues Hall of Fame, winner of the Bucks Happening List for two consecutive years for best band category, and a debut record, all position SlideWinder to expand it's aural footprint. The core members of the band include founder Paul Boddy on lead vocal and guitars. Backing Paul are the glorious pipes of Lori Gaston. Organ and piano are delivered ardently by Glenn “The Wizard” Hale. The brick wall bottom is provided by bass-man Chuck Hearne and the drums are hit with authority by the go-lucky Dave Hollingsworth. Five tracks new EP, ‘Friends Of Tuesday,’ from Paul Boddy & The SlideWinder Blues Band released on October 2020.

Interview by Michael Limnios

How has the Blues and Rock Counterculture influenced your views of the world and the journeys you’ve taken?

I've always marched to the beat of my own drum. I am not sure if blues or rock music influenced me in this regard, or if it is more that I gravitated toward these genres simply out of common ground. Chicken and egg kind of thing. One thing is for certain, I have learned to question everything, and I believe blues and rock music gave me the foundation to do so.

How do you describe your sound, music philosophy and songbook? Where does your creative drive come from?

I would like to say our sound is fun. I am thinking "fun" when I write. Passion is another word that comes to mind because I play guitar passionately and my band mates are the same. So long as we are making people feel like they are having fun and doing so passionately, I feel we've done our job.

Are there any memories from gigs, jams, open acts and studio sessions which you’d like to share with us?

My band mates and I met at a local blues jam. I can't point to a particular single memory, but there have been many magical nights that have culminated and led us to where we are today. I think the highlight to date has been opening for Sonny Landreth at The World Café.                                                       (Photo: Paul Boddy on stage)

"I would like to say our sound is fun. I am thinking "fun" when I write. Passion is another word that comes to mind because I play guitar passionately and my band mates are the same. So long as we are making people feel like they are having fun and doing so passionately, I feel we've done our job."

What do you miss most nowadays from the blues of the past? What are your hopes and fears for the future of?

Blues was fresh way back when. There wasn't as much of it available. Nowadays its only a few keystrokes away but at the cost of sonic fidelity. Fortunately, vinyl is coming back into vogue, which is a start. If we could just get back to recording in analog, the vinyl would really be something. I hope we can find a way to make digital sound better and that music becomes more meaningful and less of a commodity.

If you could change one thing in the musical world and it would become a reality, what would that be?

I’d like to see physical media come back. Records, CD's etc. I like to see a rebirth in the art of making records.

What would you say characterizes Pennsylvania blues scene in comparison to other US local scenes and circuits?

The philly sound from the 70's was globally influential. Though a different genre, I hear it in philly blues today.

What are some of the most important lessons you have learned from your experience in the music paths?

Play, play play. There are no short cuts. You have to cook in a pan hundreds of times before you can truly say it's seasoned. Music is the same thing. The more you play, the more natural and fluent you become. The more believable you are.

"Blues was fresh way back when. There wasn't as much of it available. Nowadays its only a few keystrokes away but at the cost of sonic fidelity. Fortunately, vinyl is coming back into vogue, which is a start."  (Photo: Paul Boddy)

What is the impact of music on the socio-cultural implications? How do you want it to affect people?

Music is like the great equalizer. It brings people together, no matter the shape, size, backgrounds, orientation or color. You rarely hear people fighting over music. It Is something that is shared, and it bonds us all together. I think we need more music everyday. More unity.

Let’s take a trip with a time machine, so where and why would you really want to go for a whole day?

I would love to go back to the late 60"s and spend some time writing and playing with Jimi Hendrix for half the day. Then I'd spend the second half of the day on the road with Robert Johnson, learning his stories and perhaps the so-called soul selling at the crossroads.

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