From MOJO Magazine:
This month’s MOJO magazine cover star is Eric Clapton, the man who invented rock’s cult of the lead guitarist then abdicated the high throne of its ruling deity. Through The Yardbirds, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, Cream, Blind Faith, Derek & The Dominos, solo and in an array of increasingly humble and collegiate collaborations, he has sought new applications for the blues without forsaking its beating heart.
In a remarkable interview, Clapton tells MOJO’s Michael Simmons about his comeback from booze and drug oblivion, the musical spirits that still move him and how he still can’t stand Led Zeppelin. To whet your appetite for that or (if you’ve been sent this way by the mag) to enhance your Eric-orientated experience, here are 18 good reasons to believe in “God”.
1. The Yardbirds – Louise (1963)
Blues legend John Lee Hooker cut a version of Louise for Modern Records in 1951. Twelve years later The Yardbirds delivered their own version on British TV, with the youthful Eric Clapton cutting loose at approximately 2.07.
2. John Mayall’s Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton – All Your Love (1966)
The opening cut on the fabled ‘Beano’ album showcases Clapton’s fattened sound, partly indebted to his switch to a Gibson Les Paul. This spirited take on Otis Rush’s tune unwittingly created the template for legions of less inspired blues-rockers who sought to emulate the man now labeled ‘God’.
3. Cream – Sunshine Of Your Love (1968)
Thunderous ensemble playing augmented by a fiery, soulful guitar work-out (1.59) define this Cream classic, as does the band’s psychedelic finery – the mustachioed axemeister sporting a fetching sleeveless Afghan number.
4. “The Woman Tone” (1968)
Electric Guitar For Dummies, EC-style.
5. “The Dirty Mac” – Yer Blues (1968)
Drafted by the Rolling Stones’ Rock And Roll Circus, and helping out on John Lennon’s first “live” performance since Candlestick Park, Clapton is by turns uptight and cool, wringing an electric Chicago blues from his red Gibson ES-335 that is by turns knowing and heartfelt, and thus entirely in keeping with the conflicted sentiments of Lennon’s suicidal Rishikesh 12-bar pastiche.
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