Singer song-writer of pop band The Hugs.  Native of Portland, Oregon. U.S.A.


"The Lovechild of Noel Fielding and one of the Monkees"


"I love The Hugs, they're kind of like The Libertines but are taking it from their own direction. They're a band who really know how to put a tune together and I'm totally dead excited about them."

- Carl Barât of The Libertines (NME)

"There's a band called The Hugs that I like a lot, they play folk rock, they're a Portland band, I really like their songs."

- Gus Van Sant (New York Post)

"The Hugs are a four-piece rock ’n’ roll band (Brainchild of Danny Delegato) from Portland, Oregon, who recorded their debut album in England. This makes sense because their music sounds British—not “Greensleeves” British, but rather the brand of British that became popular when groups like The Kinks and The Yardbirds invaded America in the mid-’60s with their ramshackle lyrics and bluesy riffs."

- Interview Magazine

 "Plucked from Portland, where it labored in obscurity, and deposited directly into the machinery of the British music industry, The Hugs were, for a flash of time, England's next big thing. Of course, over there, next big things come and go with editions of the Daily Mail. "

 "In 2006, Roger Sargent, an English rock photographer, came across demos on the band's Myspace page. Impressed by the maturity of the arrangements and melodies—and, no doubt, Delegato's Brit-pop leanings as a songwriter—Sargent went to James Endeacott, the A&R rep responsible for discovering the Strokes, and together they flew to Portland to see the Hugs play live. Even though the most high-profile gigs the group could line up were at coffee shops and house shows, Endeacott signed The Hugs to his Columbia-backed imprint, 1965 Records, and brought them to London."

"For the next few years, the Hugs lived in the U.K., where it toured, had meals with major industry figures, got name-checked in NME, smashed newly-bought guitars, hung out with the Libertines and, eventually, went into the studio with producer Liam Watson."

"Frontman Danny Delegato is the Guns N' Roses-era caricature, his over-sized sleeveless shirt and cowboy hat dwarfing his boyish frame. When asked to check his mic, he lets out a howl that dovetails into a squeal."

- Willamette Week

"Sustaining a project over a long period of time can be trying, but Danny Delegato, frontman and songwriter for The Hugs, has figured out how to write, record and release music for more than 10 years now. A Portland native, Delegato has a dedication to be an artist and a drive to document his life through recording songs. He has had the opportunity to not only share and play his songs on his home turf, but also in the United Kingdom where The Hugs spent a short period of time signed to Britain’s branch of Columbia U.K. Records."

- Vortex Magazine

"The Hugs have been occupying their own little corner of the Portland music scene for six years now, cranking out garage pop with an ear for arenas. You could even say it's under appreciated by some. Lead Hug Danny Delegato has forged ahead through personnel changes, kicking out happy pop for sad souls. And they keep getting better. The band's latest LP, is jam-packed with exuberant, full-bodied pop with hooks aplenty and a sparkly sheen. It's easily the Hugs' best work to date, and should turn the spotlight on this motley crew in Portland and beyond. "

"Feelings of Life', the latest LP released under the Hugs tag, is a bizarre and indelible marriage of Revolver-era psychedelia and radio-friendly, Prius ad-pop."

"Portland's The Hugs have been bashing out catchy, '60s-influenced pop for years, and get better and tighter with every release."

"Danny Delegato has been keeping his psychedelic cruise ship the Hugs afloat since 2007. A new version of the Hugs is readying a new LP out in 2019, which carries on the tradition of making psych-pop with a smack of bubblegum."

- Portland Mercury

 "Indie-pop band the Hugs aren't rough enough for Portland, and they like it that way"

 "Over the past decade or so, the Hugs have carved out a niche in the Portland music scene as a DIY group with more polish than most indie-rock groups. 

Some critics say that, over the years, the band became solely a vessel for Delegato's output as a singer-songwriter. But that changed when the band revamped its roster last November, adding Voss from Chicago, and Detroit-based drummer Keagan O'Brien. 

Speaking with Inlander by phone ahead of the Hugs' Saturday show at the Bartlett, the band says they've adopted a much more democratic approach to writing songs. To make the long-distance thing work, Delegato — the only remaining founding member — records demos and sends them to his bandmates, who come up with suggestions for changes and accompanying parts before they get in a studio together.

Lately, everyone has been down to explore new sounds. The Hugs have sounded like a poppy four-piece rock band for its entire history, but they recently started messing around with synthesizers, drum machines and electronic programming thanks to their new drummer.  

The result is a new three-song EP, New Utopia, which includes the superb dream-pop track "Friends Can Break Your Heart." The EP is due for release on Valentine's Day. 

They're still figuring out how to do justice to the new songs in the live setting, given the technical challenges of performing electronic-based music as a four-piece rock band. But that's more of a short-term concern, Delegato says. After the fun, experimental detour of "New Utopia:, the band is getting back down to business: This spring, the Hugs are headed into the studio to record the band's as-yet-untitled fifth full-length album. 

Obviously, fans will have to wait and hear the new record, but one thing's for sure: It won't be rough around the edges. ♦

- Spokane Inlander