“I’ve always been a little unorthodox about my drumming.” It’s Pam Delgado, Blame Sally’s singer-percussionist on the phone from San Francisco. “I played the drums so I could sing. I’m a singing drummer.” She mainly smacks down on a cajon, a primitive acoustic box one sits on and plays by hand. “But, over the years, I’ve added this and that.”
Blame Sally is four women, all singer-songwriters with their own careers who have also performed their original roots-blues-folksy songs together for better than a decade. The core group is Delgado, Renee Harcourt on vocals and guitar, Jeri Jones on guitar, bass, and vocals, and vocalist-pianist-accordionist Monica Pasqual. Rob Strom sits in sometimes on bass. “The question we’re all so sick of answering? The question of where we got our name.” Delgado laughs a good-natured laugh in a way that tells me not to go there. “There’s a story behind it, but it involves Jeri.” So, I ask if Blame Sally has a central message as a band and Delgado says this: “The thing that works for us is that we’re all not trying to be rock stars.”
The first four or five years, says Delgado, was more or less about jamming and getting together for some acoustic fun. Then, they played an open-mic night at an area club after which the transformation to official band status began. “We got the bug to start playing out. We booked a show here, we booked a show there. Before we knew it, we were gigging a lot, by our own rules, and really liking it.” Radio liked them, and in 2009 Blame Sally landed a multi-album recording contract. The anti–rock star thing, says Delgado, is what draws fans. “Owning who we are and being pretty honest. People enjoy us for the relationships we have with each other and with our fans. We never wanted to be a fake band.”
Blame Sally: Friday, September 21, AMSDConcerts, 4650 Mansfield Street, 619-303-8176. 7:30 p.m. $20–$47.