b. 16 February 1963, San Antonio, Texas, USA. This incredibly talented guitarist/songwriter moved to Austin, Texas in the late 70s, where he immersed himself in the local club scene. He enjoyed a spell with Bobby Mack before bursting onto the blues scene in 1994 with the release of Texas Sugar/Strat Magik, on which he was backed by John Jordan (bass) and Brannen Temple (drums). The album brought immediate acclaim for the band’s gritty, intense southern blues sound, with Duarte singled out for his technique. Indeed, in the 1995 Guitar World magazine Readers’ Poll, he was voted fourth best blues guitarist behind the much more established and esteemed company of Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy and B.B. King. Texas Sugar Strat Magik was additionally voted fourth best blues album. Duarte described the band’s sound as ‘blues based, but it has that loud aggressive edge that punk had. I liked Dead Kennedys, Sex Pistols, Dead Boys, anything that was hard.’ The decision to employ producer Dennis Herring, the former Los Angeles session guitarist previously noted for his work with Camper Van Beethoven and Throwing Muses, was also interesting. Afterwards the album was promoted on US touring dates with Buddy Guy. Tailspin Headwhack built on the debut’s blues edge by incorporating tape loops, wah-wah, and some tasteful sampling. After a three-year hiatus, during which he moved to the Zoë label, Duarte returned with Love Is Greater Than Me. The latest incarnation of his power trio consists of Damien Lewis (drums) and Dustin Sargent (bass), both were present onBlue Velocity.