As a legendary guitarist, Eric Clapton has few peers. Even in 1975, relatively early on in a career that continues to this day, he was already able to reminisce about working with Bob Dylan, Carlos Santana, Duane Allman, Jimmy Page, and Jimi Hendrix. He was touring in support of There's One in Every Crowd at the time with a band that was assembled for the previous year's release of 461 Ocean Boulevard partly as a reaction to his distaste with the supergroup format. And, at least here, it sounds like they were having fun.
Indeed, this recording works almost as well as a snapshot of the band's life on the road as it does as a exploration of Eric Clapton. There are a number of distractions, especially in Part 1. Eric starts the interview with an acoustic guitar in hands, and shortly after he puts it down, Marcy Levy and Yvonne Elliman stumble through the door trying to remember details of the events from the previous evening and morning. Combined with Clapton's seeming discomfort with his success, there are few stretches of meaningful, uninterrupted material. However, the interview does seem to gain some momentum after a short break at the end of Part 1, resuming with the lighting of cigarettes and an increased pace.
00:00 - Intro / who gave Eric a guitar?00:34 - Staying the same in the face of success01:50 - "Make it two" 02:20 - Roots: American, British, Canadian03:53 - Hearing American blues / affinity with simplicity05:35 - Playing spoons, defining folk music 06:54 - Incorporating reggae into the music / graphic artists 08:02 - The girls show up and settle in10:22 - Bob Marley the revolutionary / no good reggae musicians (except Carl Radle)11:43 - Hoodwinked by Bob Marley and Bob Dylan?12:37 - [Interlude - COVER YOUR EARS AT 12:50]13:05 - Not getting days off / remembering last night / nasal spray 14:36 - [Interlude - making drinks, teaching the blues, plans for a jam]16:16 - Life as an itinerant musician18:19 - Learning to sing from Delaney Bramlett / making Eric Clapton / Barry Feinstein21:44 - Lessons learned from Duane Allman22:46 - Not knowing Jimmy Page / sociological implications of living on an island24:20 - The most peaceful spirit he's ever worked with 25:06 - Learning from other performers / the benefits of sticking together in a band28:25 - Cream / the current band / John Mayall29:30 - [Interlude] 29:53 - Working with Bob Dylan / "music for the gods," the computational brain
00:00 - The next album / reviews of There's One in Every Crowd01:24 - Making albums for critics, oneself / Bob Dylan's set at Newport03:54 - Staying anonymous / surviving one's success06:23 - Music becoming the most important thing / too much money, too little music09:17 - Feeling competitive 10:05 - Leaving the Yardbirds / an impurist phase11:57 - Tyrannical audiences / the biggest musical sin14:43 - Unable to understand the success of Cream15:55 - Outgrowing Cream17:30 - "Layla": who plays what, how the song developed18:57 - Re-mixing old songs20:56 - Songwriting process: hotel > studio > stage / "Knockin' On Heaven's Door"23:08 - Comparisons to Jimi Hendrix24:34 - Playing with Jimi / remembering Robert Johnson25:48 - Intuitions of impending death27:08 - Other blues artist influences28:32 - Three dead people you have to listen to 29:59 - Book recommendations
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