DELTA DEEP by Helen L. Collen Photography
“The goal of DELTA DEEP is to create music that revives an appreciation for blues music. Mission accomplished.”  -AXS Entertainment. Photo by Helen L. Collen

blues (blooz) noun. 1. Spiritual, emotional lamentations; Melancholic music developed by African Americans in the rural south during the late 1800’s and finding a wider audience in the 1940’s; the foundation and cornerstone of rhythm & blues (r&b) and rock-n-roll.

Phil Collen, lead guitarist of British rock band Def Leppard & alternative roots/rock band Manraze, started Delta Deep as an extreme blues project. The band has been likened to “Aretha Franklin & Chaka Khan performing with Led Zeppelin”. Phil’s love and appreciation for the blues since childhood enabled him to move forward quickly with the band’s inception in 2012. “Blues was created out of something completely different from what we hear today. I grew up listening to rock music but then I found out it was all based on blues. Jimmy Page, Hendrix, all of those guys-they got it from blues. Today’s musicians miss out on what blues is completely about. There’s a type of ‘blues style’ but not actual blues music. I just don’t hear true blues anymore unless I go back and listen to really old music.” With that reasoning Phil decided to change the tide of what he was hearing.

Collen met vocalist Debbi Blackwell-Cook in 2010. She not only performed at his wedding but is also his wife Helen’s godmother. Blackwell-Cook’s performance history includes theatre, a stint as lead singer in an 80’s r-n-b band, background vocalist for Michael Buble and Gregory Hines and singing for Pope John Paul II.  After the wedding Debbi visited Phil and Helen often in California. Pretty soon Phil and Debbi were singing Motown tunes and classic blues numbers around the house. Debbi also eventually sang on several Manraze releases and currently loans background harmonies to the 2015 self-titled Def Leppard album, their first release in eight years. She and Phil began performing live locally including a special performance at San Diego’s Gerson Institute and a television broadcast for UTV.

DELTA DEEP at Hotel Cafe. LA, Ca. 2015. Photo by Helen L. Collen
The members of DELTA DEEP (left to right): Phil Collen-co-lead vocals, guitars, Robert DeLeo-bass, Debbi Blackwell-Cook-co-lead vocals, Forrest Robinson-drums, percussion. Photo by Helen L. Collen

One afternoon in 2013 in a New Zealand kitchen Phil, Debbi, and Helen wrote the first of ten tunes that would soon become the self-titled 2015 debut album ‘DELTA DEEP’. Upon returning to the states they continued to write. Phil and Debbi began recording tracks in Phil’s home studio. During this time a chance encounter with drummer Forrest Robinson allowed Phil to share his ideas about the great extreme blues project that had taken shape.Forrest Robinson, a phenomenal drummer who has roots in heavy metal and played for The Crusaders, Joe Sample, TLC, and India.Arie met Phil years prior at an India.Arie concert. The reconnection years later proved vital to the continued growth of Delta Deep. With Forrest entering the band as their drummer/percussionist Delta Deep continued to gain headway securing several live performances for radio and internet podcasts all the while recording for their debut release.

Stone Temple Pilots’ bassist Robert DeLeo completes the soulful quartet and lends his fiery and melodic bottom end sounds to the group’s diversified catalog. DeLeo’s love of jazz & Motown styled rhythm & blues offers a stealthy foundation that allows Delta Deep to showcase a dramatic range of untouchable musical movement. And with DeLeo’s entry the harmonious puzzle is complete.

The critical authority, Elmore Magazine says “If you’re into good old spiritual, emotional and thought provoking rock n roll, look no further than Delta Deep.” Screamer Magazine accurately describes Delta Deep’s music “Sweltering hot, sorrow-drenched, deep southern blues.”  Axis Magazine declares If the goal of (DELTA DEEP) is to create music that revives an appreciation for blues music. Mission accomplished.”

DELTA DEEP is currently preparing to release their live album ‘West Coast Live’. Their sophomore album will be released 2017. Stay tuned.

For more information please contact:

Melissa Dragich-CorderoMAD Ink, PR (

(310) 547-1212/