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Clapton- The Music

Started by TheMonk, December 19, 2021, 12:38:10 PM

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TheMonk

With everyone questioning Eric Clapton of late the focus seems to have been taken off his music. What of quality has he done since Cream and the Layla & Other Assorted Love songs album then? It appears to be very slim pickings but I am open to being proven wrong.

I have tried. I had a blues album of his I was given that I threw out years ago, From The Cradle - pish . His blues stuff is not a scratch on proper blues.
My dad had a copy of Unplugged which I didn't mind but in retrospect it's hardly exciting.
Journeyman and August I tried but they're like a stream of over polished turds.

His best ofs don't do him much justice in retrospect. His latter day gear is just mush- Change The World, My Father's Eyes, Bad Love, Forever Man... just C grade stuff. Even his better known gear is either covers or bland MOR gear  like Lay Down Sally, I've Got A Rock N Roll Heart, It's In The Way That You Use It or Wonderful Tonight. Looking back just so dreadfully dull. The man seems like he just can't be bothered with it all.

How on Earth could he have had more cred than a Phil Collins or Elton John? They had tunes up the wazoo in comparison.

Saw him live a few years back and it was hands down the most boring concert I've seen. Uneventful setlist, completely disengaged and bored stage presence and uninspired guitar solos ahoy (and he got some other bloke to do most of the legwork.) I fell asleep at least twice.

Lastly to these ears his guitar work is just so lacking in emotional weight compared to others of his ilk, say Knopfler or Gilmore whose playing just soars. Really it's like he just can't be arsed.

What am I missing? Van Morrison is allegedly a **** which is a shame as his music is brilliant at times. Same goes Michael Jackson obviously. But Clapton- I've never really seen the reason people tolerate him. Sure he can obviously play, but is that enough?

Honestly, is he really good? What tracks show him in his best light then? What are his best moments outside of the obvious couple of well worn tunes?

Pauline Walnuts

December 19, 2021, 12:52:28 PM #1 Last Edit: December 19, 2021, 01:07:41 PM by Pauline Walnuts
I quite liked Disraeli Gears. Not sure he's done anything I'd want to listen to after Politician/late Cream or something. Not even Derick and the Dominoes or that one with dodgy cover.

Oh, just remembered, I quite liked him on Roger Waters Pro and Cons of Hitchhiking.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=AgPa8pykgTE&list=OLAK5uy_l4S4hqzoPYGSTOnbGutKs28BGGLoCNfHI&index=4

peanutbutter

From what I gathered reading up on this yesterday he didn't actually contribute anywhere near as much in the songwriting department to Cream as I had thought and Layla's riff was by Duane Allman (somehow didn't get a writing credit for it though?!?!?) with the outro by someone else too which leaves me wondering what on earth was the song he had written at all.

It's a bit baffling that he's somehow in every way far shitter than 14 year old me thought I was going too far thinking.

sevendaughters

he did some good guest spots in the early 70s for Viv Stanshall and Doris Troy and George Harrison but come on the guy is basically the musical version of herpes simplex.

sevendaughters

his blues is just minor pentatonic stuff with an expensive tone. it's your dad's blues. just awful, awful player.

the science eel

Quote from: TheMonk on December 19, 2021, 12:38:10 PMWith everyone questioning Eric Clapton of late the focus seems to have been taken off his music. What of quality has he done since Cream and the Layla & Other Assorted Love songs album then?


Nothing.

There's an early album (his first?) with a song called 'Let It Rain', but it's not going to knock you out or anything. I kind of like it tho'.

He's really a very dull man whose music, past about 1970, isn't worth digging around in. Look elsewhere! those early Jack Bruce solo albums have some gems. Or the Allman Bros or something.

His high point was the Edge of Darkness TV soundtrack from 1985, with composer Michael Kamen. This material repeatedly finds the emotional depth that I'd agree with the other posters is missing from a lot of his work. (It helps that the series is one of the best of the BBC ever did).
https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=o55DQSs-k_w

kalowski

Fuck him forever, the hideous racist.

cosmic-hearse

The Yardbirds were obviously fantastic, but what kind of man hears 'For Your Love' & then thinks "I'm leaving this band"?

cosmic-hearse

I suppose the antithesis of Clapton would be Tony McPhee, who played the blues in a far more creative way, never tired of proudly flying his freak flag, and recorded a 20 minute anti fox hunting songs which sounds like Tangerine Dream if they'd have been signed to Industrial Records.

kalowski

Quote from: cosmic-hearse on December 19, 2021, 04:26:03 PMThe Yardbirds were obviously fantastic, but what kind of man hears 'For Your Love' & then thinks "I'm leaving this band"?
The kind of man who thinks "I wish all immigrants would leave this country."

Pauline Walnuts

The Steve Hoffman forum has been quietly deleting any threads about the copyright case, here you have two 'Eric Clapton? Eric Crapton more like! Also he's a racist cunt' threads.


That's a good thing.


Pauline Walnuts

Just remembered, I quite like his playing at the end of


But it's probably just his guitar sitting on top of his gear (amplifier+speakers) while he goes off to smoke his gear (heroin).

Correction it was only John Lennon: https://youtu.be/-GfXg5QrKpc?t=2927

Kin' ell you try to give a guy a break...

Quote from: sevendaughters on December 19, 2021, 01:14:05 PMhis blues is just minor pentatonic stuff with an expensive tone. it's your dad's blues. just awful, awful player.
Quote from: cosmic-hearse on December 19, 2021, 04:32:31 PMI suppose the antithesis of Clapton would be Tony McPhee, who played the blues in a far more creative way, never tired of proudly flying his freak flag, and recorded a 20 minute anti fox hunting songs which sounds like Tangerine Dream if they'd have been signed to Industrial Records.

I would want to argue that blues played fairly straight and not really stepping too far away from pentatonic-minor scales can be a legitimate and exciting form of music, depending on what the performer brings to it. This performance by Freddie King, for example, has a tremendous sense of theatre about it, with King seemingly reaching not only for a new set of licks with every 12-bar turnaround, but also through a whole catalogue of things to do with his face, gurning, scowling, grinning and leering as he does.
Clapton is a wasted talent, (and I can't really argue with someone like kalowski who's saying his racist behaviour in the 70s makes his work worthless) but musical criticism of him should be more focused on his failings as a straightforward blues performer than for his lack of progressive or avant-garde tendencies.

SteveDave

Quote from: Pauline Walnuts on December 19, 2021, 05:06:34 PMThe Steve Hoffman forum has been quietly deleting any threads about the copyright case, here you have two 'Eric Clapton? Eric Crapton more like! Also he's a racist cunt' threads.


That's a good thing.



I am no longer allowed to post in the thread "What if Eric Clapton had joined the Beatles?" because I said their next single would've been "Commonwealth" and Billy Preston wouldn't have been allowed in the studio. I finished with "Fuck that chud" Some other chud then said "Fuck your opinion" and I accused him of siding with a racist and now I've been blocked for "Trolling and vulgarity"

Goldentony

just listen to literally anything with Eddie Hazel on instead

kalowski

Quote from: Goldentony on December 19, 2021, 06:18:12 PMjust listen to literally anything with Eddie Hazel on instead
This post makes me extremely happy.

SpiderChrist

When I first discovered George Harrison's acoustic demo of While My Guitar Gently Weeps, my first thought was "This is much better than the version with Clapton wanking all over it".

SpiderChrist

Quote from: Goldentony on December 19, 2021, 06:18:12 PMjust listen to literally anything with Eddie Hazel on instead

Close the thread.

The Culture Bunker

I've never really been into the blues-rock stuff, and if I'm going down that road, I'd much rather have some Rory Gallagher. Even his more pop stuff doesn't have much appeal - I suppose his covering 'I Shot the Sheriff' paid Marley's munchies bills for the rest of his days.

It seemed like he became really popular again (with the 'Unplugged' album) around the same time Phil Collins' profile was dropping. Not sure if there's a connection there - the AOR market moving from 80s sheen to a more 'real' sound.

His contribution to 'While My Guitar Gently Weeps' may be the only Clapton I have in my entire record collection.

jobotic

The fact that he didn't write the end bit of Layla is a plus for him in my book but doesn't make up for the fact that he played on it or presumably wrote the first bit. Or his racism.

the science eel

He's good on that Bluesbreakers LP

Mr Banlon

I've got a kid in another country I've hardly seen or bothered with. If he takes a dive out of a window, I suppose I too could capitalize off his death somehow. I doubt it though. He's in his late-20s, and apparently a right fucking cunt.

TheMonk

Quote from: Pauline Walnuts on December 19, 2021, 05:06:34 PMThe Steve Hoffman forum has been quietly deleting any threads about the copyright case, here you have two 'Eric Clapton? Eric Crapton more like! Also he's a racist cunt' threads.


That's a good thing.
That forum does my head in proper. Every time anything gets interesting they delete posts or entire threads. Or merge them. Given up on it.

gilbertharding

When I was about 12, and impressionable, Alexis Korner did a series on Radio 1 about 'guitar heroes', and there was an episode about Eric Clapton which I happened to tape and listened to again and again. And because I decided I liked the Yardbirds and Bluesbreakers and Cream tracks he played, and because I was young and impressionable, I didn't really realise that 80% of everything else he played was awful MOR bollocks, and I resolved to get myself a copy of Eric's latest LP: Money and Cigarettes.

And once I'd got it, I tried to like it.

It was very, very difficult.

Yeah - obviously he's shit, and has been for at least 50 years. And the stuff he did before that isn't really worth holding your nose for. The Cream stuff isn't even well recorded.


TheGingerAlien

Peter Green was way better.  Even after being spiked with all that acid... 

I was waffling on about what a bastard Crapton was last week and in his defence, my colleagues noted that he had suffered a terrible tragedy re his kid.  I suppose that hit single about said tragedy made up for it though? 

Absolute shite, always has been.  I suppose his influence on others (Hendrix etc) is relevant but otherwise he can get te fuck IMHO.

gilbertharding

Quote from: TheGingerAlien on December 20, 2021, 09:40:06 AMI was waffling on about what a bastard Crapton was last week and in his defence, my colleagues noted that he had suffered a terrible tragedy re his kid.  I suppose that hit single about said tragedy made up for it though? 

Also in his defence - his mum sounded like a proper bastard.

And - without wanting it to sound like I'm defending him on this point - people say 'he was drunk' when he did that onstage rant: this is understating the amount of abuse he was giving himself. I'm surprised he didn't end up like Michael Clarke out of the Byrds.

Oh yeah - before all his Covid madness made his terrible personality and opinions all the clearer, I read a load of stuff blaming him for the death of Alice Ormsby Gore, which seems a bit of a stretch but still.

Nah - he's the Jim Davidson of virtuoso guitar playing.




famethrowa

I'd be interested in a discussion/explanation as to how this boring lad, barely out of his teens, could suddenly become the first proper guitar hero and hang on to that importance and cachet for the rest of his life? He seemed to have no ideas beyond "I like the blues". Hideaway from the Bluesbreakers album is quite good for a minute or two, but it's mainly a copy of the original but louder. Was that simply his success, that "louder=better"? People took the "Clapton is God" graffiti seriously! Was he just lucky to be there at the time the world was ready for"scorching solos"?

iamcoop

His is unquestionably one of the most boring guitar players to ever achieve god-like status. He should've been cancelled for that alone.