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Eric Clapton

By the time Eric Clapton launched his solo career with the release of his self-titled debut album in mid-1970, he was long established as one of the world's major rock stars due to his group affiliations -- the Yardbirds, John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, Cream, and Blind Faith -- which had demonstrated his claim to being the best rock guitarist of his generation. That it took Clapton so long to go out on his own, however, was evidence of a degree of reticence unusual for one of his stature. And his debut album, though it spawned the Top 40 hit "After Midnight," was typical of his self-effacing approach: it was, in effect, an album by the group he had lately been featured in, Delaney & Bonnie & Friends.

Not surprisingly, before his solo debut had even been released, Clapton had retreated from his solo stance, assembling from the D&B&F ranks the personnel for a group, Derek & the Dominos, with whom he played for most of 1970 and recorded the landmark album Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs. Clapton was largely inactive in 1971 and 1972, due to heroin addiction, but he performed a comeback concert at the Rainbow Theatre in London on January 13, 1973, resulting in the album Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert (September 1973). But Clapton did not launch a sustained solo career until July 1974, when he released 461 Ocean Boulevard, which topped the charts and spawned the number one single "I Shot the Sheriff."

The persona Clapton established over the next decade was less that of guitar hero than arena rock star with a weakness for ballads. The follow-ups to 461 Ocean Boulevard, There's One in Every Crowd (March 1975), the live E.C. Was Here (August 1975), and No Reason to Cry (August 1976), were less successful. But Slowhand (November 1977), which featured both the powerful "Cocaine" (written by J.J. Cale, who had also written "After Midnight") and the hit singles "Lay Down Sally" and "Wonderful Tonight," was a million-seller. Its follow-ups, Backless (November 1978), featuring the Top Ten hit "Promises," the live Just One Night (April 1980), and Another Ticket (February 1981), featuring the Top Ten hit "I Can't Stand It," were all big sellers.

Clapton's popularity waned somewhat in the first half of the '80s, as the albums Money and Cigarettes (February 1983), Behind the Sun (March 1985), and August (November 1986) indicated a certain career stasis. But he was buoyed up by the release of the box set retrospective Crossroads (April 1988), which seemed to remind his fans of how great he was. Journeyman (November 1989) was a return to form. It would be his last new studio album for nearly five years, though in the interim he would suffer greatly and enjoy surprising triumph. On March 20, 1991, Clapton's four-year-old son was killed in a fall. While he mourned, he released a live album, 24 Nights (October 1991), culled from his annual concert series at Royal Albert Hall in London, and prepared a movie soundtrack, Rush (January 1992). The soundtrack featured a song written for his son, "Tears in Heaven," that became a massive hit single.

In March 1992, Clapton recorded a concert for MTV Unplugged which, when released on an album in August, became his biggest-selling record ever. Two years later, Clapton returned with a blues album, From the Cradle, which became one of his most successful albums, both commercially and critically. Crossroads, Vol. 2: Live in the Seventies, a box set chronicling his live work from the '70s, was released to mixed reviews. In early 1997, Clapton, billing himself by the pseudonym "X-Sample," collaborated with keyboardist/producer Simon Climie as the ambient new age and trip-hop duo T.D.F. The duo released Retail Therapy to mixed reviews in early 1997.

Clapton retained Climie as his collaborator for Pilgrim, his first album of new material since 1989's Journeyman. Pilgrim was greeted with decidedly mixed reviews upon its spring 1998 release, but the album debuted at number four and stayed in the Top Ten for several weeks on the success of the single "My Father's Eyes." In 2000, Clapton teamed up with old friend B.B. King on Riding with the King, a set of blues standards and material from contemporary singer/songwriters. Another solo outing, entitled Reptile, followed in early 2001. Three years later, Clapton issued Me and Mr. Johnson, a collection of tunes honoring the Mississippi-born bluesman Robert Johnson. Released in 2005, Back Home, Clapton's 14th album of original material, reflected his ease with fatherhood. Also in 2005, Clapton unexpectedly teamed with Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker for a Cream reunion that included May concerts at London's Royal Albert Hall and shows at New York's Madison Square Garden in October, with the former being compiled for a live release that fall.

This turned out to be the first of many reunions and looks back for Clapton. In 2006, he elevated the profile of his latter-day idol J.J. Cale by recording an album-long duet, The Road to Escondido. The following year he released his autobiography -- accompanied by a new career compilation called The Complete Clapton -- which focused more on his trials with addiction and subsequent recovery than his musical career. In 2008, Clapton began playing regular shows with his old Blind Faith partner Steve Winwood, gigs that were captured on the 2009 double-live set Live from Madison Square Garden. Winwood also appeared on Clapton's next studio album, 2010's Clapton, which was a collaboration-heavy affair also featuring Cale, Sheryl Crow, Allen Toussaint, and Wynton Marsalis. In 2011, Clapton returned the favor to Marsalis by collaborating on the live concert album Play the Blues: Live from Jazz at Lincoln Center.

Clapton parted ways with Warner after Clapton, and he chose to set up his own Bushbranch imprint on Gary Hoey's independent label Surfdog. His first album for the label was Old Sock, largely a collection of old songs the guitarist loved. It reached the Top Ten in the U.S. and Great Britain. In the fall of 2013, Warner Bros. released Crossroads Guitar Festival 2013, and his Unplugged album was expanded and remastered by Rhino. Early the following year, Clapton announced that a new album, The Breeze: An Appreciation of J.J. Cale would be issued in the July, one year on from the passing of his key inspiration. The tribute album included contributions from artists such as Willie Nelson, John Mayer, Tom Petty, and Mark Knopfler. ~ Stephen Thomas Erlewine, Rovi
full bio

Selected Discography

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Track List: Slowhand (35th Anniversary Super Deluxe Edition)

Disc 1
Disc 3
Disc 4
Disc 5
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Track List: Call Me The Breeze (Single)

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Track List: Crying Eyes (Single)

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Track List: Every Little Thing (Damian & Stephen Marley Remixes) (Single)

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Track List: Gotta Get Over (Single)

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Track List: Run Back To Your Side (Single)

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Track List: Sensitive Kind (Single)

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Track List: Songbird (Single)

Comments

Portugal
what about his 14 year collaboratio n with Bramhall II
One great guitar player
lyleseverett
I would nick name him.....Slow Hand Luke !!!!!!
pffft motherf**ker is a dam racist. f**kin hypocrite
Anybody who does'nt Love Clapton is a F**kin P**sy
untamedspiri t s
JJ Cale wrote Cocaine. NOT Gary Louris. :(
He looks so much like my DAD it is so not funny. In fact, I find it quite ironic. Lord, my DAD is watching me. OH HELL. This is in his photo on the cover of the Clapton 2010 album and here in the bio. I wish I could show you a photo of my DAD so you could know. They are like twins. No, Eric is not my DAD BUT he damn sure looks like him.
Promises : I LOVE THIS SONG
jillinx1
Circus left town my fav
love this dude
Rock solid. Usually not a rockusic fan but this guy
I'm irritated because while listening to his station I hear probably one clapton song for every six other artist songs. I mean it's a clapton station i'd like to hear more clapton. I mean at least make it a third of the music I hear clapton!
Slow hand is ALWAYS at his best. There is no substitute, lol.
Slow hand at his best
Running on Faith. : Oh yea? Show me.
All the information below is really fascinating
andre_ricaud
Chuck Leavell is on keyboard on Unplugged album.
erin.darmond
Love this.. fly on my daughter Heather
Mom's favorite song......UG H ! ! ! ! ! BORING!!!! (No offense)~Dia n a
ohoh baby ya
allsnpickle
Don't read this because it actually works. You will be kissed on the nearest possible Friday by the love of your life. However if you don't post this you will die in 2 day. Now you've started reading so don't stop. This is so scary put this on at least 5 songs in 143 minutes. When done press f6 and your lover's name will come on the screen in big letters. This is so scary because it actually works
tembuck2
ztapcoll. You Due Better ?? Put Up or Shut Up ??
tembuck2
WHO is on the KEYS ??
Wepa
I was a kid when Layla came out, I bought the cassette Layla and other Assorted Love songs. I found my love for screaming guitars, based on Layla. Fell in love with Clapton, based on Layla. Back in golden days of younder, we didn't anyway to actually research movie in rural south Georgia. I finally bought the album and read the liner notes and discovered that the guitar riff that awakened me was actually Duane Allman, not Clapton. I felt kind of betrayed, but to this day Clapton and Duane r
Give Me Strength. Ocean Boulevard's in Oxnard. I think there's one in San Diego too. I'm not sure. I'll take any Ocean Boulevard. Because I know there's an ocean nearby somewhere.
He looks like my DAD. Makes me feel guilty. He's got that, you did something wrong look. :-)
After Duane died, Clapton is the best.
one of the most over-looked strat players ever.
garrickconne c t i o n
There is a saying in sports that those who do exceptionall y well will most likely get their ring. Clapton is indeed that exception.
A Strat that is...
Regardless of any recordings he's released over the years he still stands as one of the greatest blues rock players to ever pick up stray!...
robert macray
ztapcoll
ZZZzzzzzzzzz z z z z z z z z z z z z z z z z z . . . . . . . . . . . . . T o o bad he peaked with the first version of Layla. except for a couple of songs, he's been phoning it in ever since
The artist formerly know as god ? enough said
This guy is a great, great guitarist and his voice has improved too. He can pull off old times blues. He must smoke a couple of packs of Chesterfield s daily. (Just kidding about the smokes).
owwwww
woooh
so awesome
he's boss
good ol' Mr. Slowhand....
bigntal
I can listen to him anytime and start feeling better than i did before. he's that GOOD!
His music is like a guided meditation
Clapton is god. If you are old school you know what I'll talking about!
hjmunson
George is the worst
Ain't it the truth!
marcus.olear y
Clapton is the best
Love this song on "E.C. was here" !!
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