Sadly, Duffy Power died this morning, 19/2/14.
Duffy was an incredibly talented man whose career, from
roughly 1958 - 75, encompassed many great movements in British music -
rock'n'roll, R&B, soul, rock and so much more. Among many other
collaborations and adventures, he worked with John McLaughlin in 1963 (touring
and recording with the Graham Bond Quartet) and again from late 1965 to early
1967, co-writing songs and recording numerous publishing demos plus the Duffy’s
Nucleus single ‘Hound Dog’ and a French EP.
Most of Duffy’s recordings with John can be found across
two 2CD compilations on the RPM label: Leapers
& Sleepers and Vampers &
Champers (the latter, alas, currently out of print).
He never had the success he deserved - nowhere near it.
Duffy semi-retired from music in the mid 70s, making a few forays back into it
now and again. Though out of music entirely in recent years, I had hoped he
might he consider being the surprise guest at the Waterstones, Piccadilly,
author event for Bathed In Lightning
in March. I thought it unlikely, but I would have loved for it to have
He was one of the greats, in my view, regardless of the
McLaughlin connection. It’s a real shame that his talent never quite clicked
with the masses. Thankfully, RPM, Hux and Market Square have made a great deal
of his 60s and 70s work – and his swansong recordings from the early 2000s, Tigers, with which I was honoured to
have been involved - available in the digital era. His recollections were a
tremendous help with my book Dazzling Stranger: Bert Jansch and the British
folk and blues revival (Bloomsbury, 2000) and again with Bathed In Lightning.
He had seen the draft chapters in the book relating to him and had been very
complimentary about them. I hope they will stand as some kind of testament to
even a part of his incredible achievements in music.