Dan Bubien & the Delta Struts put a contemporary spin on soulful roots music. Driven by the dynamic guitar playing duo of Shawn Mazzei and Dan Bubien, along with Bubien’s soulful gritty vocals. Their signature sound is highlighted by the precision playing and deep toned-full sound of drummer Mark Pollera and glued together by Christian Caputo’s steady, groove oriented bass playing.  They are set to release their first studio album together as a band in early spring of 2019 and Dan’s 3rd album in the past 5 years.

Dan Bubien is a singer/songwriter/guitarist born and raised in the small steel town of Aliquippa, Pennsylvania. This rust belt town Northwest of Pittsburgh, has been the launching pad for a career that spans over two decades now culminating with his current band The Delta Struts.

Dan’s professional career began in his mid-teens working along side veteran musicians on the local and regional club circuit of Southwest PA. Along the way, Dan founded and recorded with The Sun Kings  releasing Rub It In (2006) while continuing to hone his skills as a front man and songwriter. As a solo artist, Dan released “Empty Roads” in 2013 with the help of four-time Grammy Award Winning Producer/Engineer Jay Dudt of Audible Images Studios. Capitalizing on his previous success with “Empty Roads”, Dan released his second solo album in August of 2016 entitled “Grinding These Gears”. Self-produced and recorded by legendary Pittsburgh musician Joe Munroe “Grinding These Gears” achieved critical acclaim and charted on the Blues/Rock and World Wide blues album charts respectively.

Fast forward to 2017 and the newest incarnation of Dan’s vision has culminated in the creation of Dan Bubien and The Delta Struts. Gritty and honest, yet always soulful one might think this band hails from a place much further south than the suburbs of northwest Pittsburgh. Dan is constantly refining and redefining his craft using a wide palette of tones and textures, sounds and styles, that express a heart-felt love of all things music. Rooted in soul, and versed in a style that harkens back to the days of a classic STAX recording, Dan Bubien and The Delta Struts consistently break new ground with an eclectic spin on the collective music they make. Backed by the stellar guitar playing of Shawn Mazzei and anchored by rhythm section veterans Mark Pollera (Drums) and Christian Caputo (Bass) The Delta Struts chart a course that begins and ends with the music always being the first priority. After spending much of 2018 recording what was to become “Thieves and YesterdaysDan Bubien and The Delta Struts plan on a release date of February 1st and a tour starting in Nashville at the end of March. Check our website for up to date information and reviews about “Thieves and Yesterday’s” as well as updates from the road beginning in March.


Grinding These Gears: 

  • Three weeks in top ten RMR Blues/Rock Album charts, charted as high as #4
  • Three weeks in top twenty RMR Blues Album charts, charted as high as #12
  • Three weeks at #1 RMR PA State Album charts
  • Spent over 6 months on the Blues, Blues/Rock and PA State Album Charts and selected as #36 “Best of 2016” Blues/Rock Album Roots Music Report
  • Selected by the Blues Society of Western Pennsylvania in the “Best Self-Produced CD” category at the 2017 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN.

Empty Roads:

  • Selected as one of the top 5 albums of 2013 in 91.3 WYEP’s Year in Review Publication by deejay Rob O’Friel
  • Charted has high as #14 on the PA Roots Charts and #41 on the Worldwide Blues Charts
  • Selected by the Blues Society of Western Pennsylvania in the “Best Self-Produced CD” category at the 2014 International Blues Challenge in Memphis, TN.

Festival Appearances

People’s Choice Festival, PA – Creekside Blues & Jazz Festival, OH -Canal Winchester Blues Festival, OH – Pittsburgh Blues Festival, PA – Heritage Music Festival, WV – Blast Furnace Blues Fest, PA – Dream On Fest, PA – Carnegie Blues Fest, PA, – Strip District Music Fest, PA – Blind Raccoon Showcase at IBC, TN, Hopewell Blues & BBQ Fest, PA, Johnstown Blues & Brews Festival, PA, Easterns Bayside Blues Festival, MD

Opened For/Performed With

311, Los Lonely Boys, Valerie June, John Browns Body, Robert Randolph, Martin Barre (Jethro Tull), Anthony Gomes, The Bros. Landereth, Scott Sharrard (Greg Allman), Patrick Sweany, Davey Knowles, Indigenous, Quinn Sullivan, Seth Walker, Hamish Anderson, Anna Popovich, Magic Slim, Joe Louis Walker, Bernard Allison, Tinsley Ellis, Shemekia Copeland, Debbie Davies, Guitar Shorty and Michael Burks.

Shawn Mazzei – Guitar


Mark Pollera – Drums


Dan Bubien – Guitar & Vocals


Christian “Captain” Caputo – Bass


Review of “Grinding These Gears” by Peter Merrett PBS106.7 Melbourne Australia

*** Track 1. – “Palest Rider” Written by Dan Bubien & Roman Marocco.
Soulful atmospheric Blues intro to this much anticipated album from Bubien and his band before stunning slide guitar, drums, bass and keyboard that propel it into a crescendo of sound. Budien’s voice is expressive and commands absolute attention. Pathos laded but forceful, certainly a instant hit that will draw in many a listener who have not heard of Bubien prior to this.

*** Track 2. – “Grinding The Gears” Written by Dan Bubien.
Hard rockin’ Rock/Blues drives along with a take no prisoner attitude that is full of swagger and bravado. Munroe provides some very tasty piano as Bubien unleashes his prodigious guitars talents that lead into an outstanding sax solo from Manion. Bubien certainly processes and extraordinary voice that has a power but also a more soulful side that lends itself well to all that  is required to send each and every song to dizzying heights.

*** Track 3. – “Forever Yours” Written by Dan Bubien.
Wow, wow, wow where does one start with this one. Glorious Soul drenched Blues that envelops the listener in a cocoon of aural delight. Gospel tinged with a big chorus style backing vocals. Munroe is certainly in his element with this one that is resplendent in a keyboard heaven. Strong percussion from Taravella and bass from Munroe provide a solid rhythm section. Bubien once again shows just how much of a singer he is as well as the stunning understated guitar. This for me is a tour de force of Soul/Blues  that just takes one’s breath away and  makes you feel so very good.

*** Track 4. – “Vagabond” Written by Dan Bubien.
Potent Rock/Blues that has a driving undertone that  relentlessly propels throughout this one. Bubien’s vocals growl and rise and fall as if he is howling at a full moon.. Munroe expands on that almost Gothic feel with his keyboards laying bare the emotion from Bubien’s fire laden guitar. Again the rhythm section of Taravella and Munroe is faultless. This is quite a musical epic that tells a powerful story, not for the weak at heart.

*** Track 5. – “Dark Hearted Woman” Written by Dan Bubien & Roman Marocco.
Bubien’s exquisite vocals and stunning slide guitar introduces another trademark big big Soul drenched Blues that could easily be construed as his trademark. Certainly pathos laden with Bubien wailing as if his life depended on it stripping back his soul to allow his guitar to cut even deeper. Munroe again is blistering and heart wrenching with his keyboards. Here again we have another tour do force song on an album that is abundantly adorned with “classic” tracks. All l can say is “have mercy mercy”!

*** Track 6. – “Second Hand Man” Written by Dan Bubien & Roman Marocco.
A retrospective sounding Bubien who launches into a Reggae  inspired offering with wonderful Caribbean inspired doo-wop backing vocals. To complete that sound Bufalini provides the wonderful trumpet and Davis the saxophone. Big bold and brassy just as it should be. On this one not only does Bubien provide the outstanding guitar but also plays bass. Wonderful full bodied delight here. Enjoy the sound and feel.

*** Track 7. – “Memphis Murder Blues” Written by Dan Bubien & Roman Marocco.
Ahhhhh yeah a bit of Texas boogie for good measure as Bubien lays on some stunning slide. Taravella provides a touch of the South with that flat bass drum sound that is swept up into a crescendo from  a great band that delivers all the goodies. Driving rhythm section, soaring guitar, piano triplets and stunning keyboards all melded together by Bubien’s amazing voice. Can’t ask for more than this!

*** Track 8. – “I Will Take Care Of You” Written by Dan Bubien.
Taravella’s masculine drum heralds in this powerful heart wrenching ballad. Bubien’s vocals a subdued and somewhat restrained to great effect delivering a mesmerizing feel soaring from very high to dizzying lows. Deeply rooted in the Blues this one is definitely full bodied what with the keyboards and faint distant backing vocals that combine with Bubien’s guitar and the rhythm section to take us to  a whole new place as they play with our emotions and cut deep into our heart’s.

*** Track 9. – “Coming Clean” Written by Dan Bubien & Roman Marocco.
Quite a jaunty Rhythm & Blues with Bubien singing in a slightly restrained manor so as to draw every emotion he can from this one. By now it is more than obvious that not only do we have a seriously great album but also stunningly written and well crafted songs. Beautiful restrained orchestration that the charts simply shine on. Bubien certainly can squeeze every emotion from a song what with voice and guitar. As for the band, well they don’t get any better than this as the song and voice are  there to be enjoyed and the band are a beautiful dessert.
*** Track 10. – “The Struggle Is Real” Written Dan Bubien & Roman Marocco.
The final track has a Southern chain gang work song drive about it. Taravella again employs that hypnotic flat bass drum to haunting effect. For Blues this has been an omnipresent subject that gave birth to so many songs and legends. Such a gut wrenching potent Blues that displays all that is great about Dan Bubien and band. The guitar from Bubien weeps and moans with a thousand stories  of what was so wrong in the South. With every note and chord there are tears and pain that we can feel, but here we have a way to reach out to our unforgivable past. Perfect Blues!!!.

Dan Bubien the Aliquippi Pennsylvania native hasn’t graced us with a new album since the 2013 release “Empty Roads”. Was the wait worth it you might ask, my heartfelt answer is a resounding YES! “Empty Roads” was absolutely stunning and it would have been very easy to dismiss this as just another ordinary follow up by an artist to a great album. In this case however l didn’t feel that Bubien could raise the bar that much higher but raise it he did to a dizzying height. The pathos and power of each track is tangible with well-crafted thoughtful songs and orchestration that doesn’t get much better if at all. There are no mere fill in tracks as each can stand alone as work of aural art. I for one, like so many others fell instantly into Bubien’s web of talent but here this one has made my heart sore with delight and admiration. Already with “Grinding These Gears” you have an album that will feature strongly in everyone’s favourite albums of 2016 and will be one that the listener will return to over and over again. Every track is an “A” side and l just have to go back and have another listen so please excuse me as l press replay!