On this date in 1984, Pink Floyd's Roger Waters released his first solo album, The Pros and Cons of Hitchhiking. The album abounded with something that Eric Clapton’s early Eighties albums sorely lacked: screaming guitar solos — played by Eric Clapton!
"It’s so funny, this,” Clapton says. “I’ve always had that held up as like, ‘This is one of the great landmarks of guitar playing.’ But most of that solo is on the wrong beat. Instead of playing on the two and the four, I’m playing on the one and the three and thinking, ‘That’s the off beat.’ No wonder people think it’s so good—because it’s fucking wrong.” [laughs]
Robert Johnson, the man who Eric Clapton called "the most important blues musician who ever lived," was born 103 years ago on May 8, 1911, in Hazlehurst, Mississippi. Although he lived only 27 years, his haunting singing, guitar skills and compositions have influenced generations of musicians — and continue to fascinate the most gifted of guitarists.
There was a time when the name Eric Clapton meant one thing and one thing only: guitar god. His incendiary six-string exploits with the Yardbirds, followed by a pair of mind-blowing 1966 albums—Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton and Fresh Cream—briefly put the passionate young Clapton atop the U.K.’s, if not the world’s, guitar hierarchy.
Here’s a live acoustic video of Clapton’s classic “Change The World,” as he jams out with full band. Released in 1996, the song won Grammy Awards for Record of the Year, Song of the Year (for the songwriters), as well as Best Male Pop Vocal performance.
Whether it was jealousy, ego or apathy, the other members of the band didn't seem to care too much for the tune when Harrison introduced it to them and attempted to record initial takes on August 16. After more work on the song on September 3 and 5, he decided he didn't like what he heard and scrapped the recording.
Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton have performed together several times over the years. They've even toured together. But in terms of pure entertainment value, I haven't found anything as enjoyable than the clip at the bottom of this story.
Just as “Crossroads” introduced a new generation of music fans to the mystique of Robert Johnson, Cream’s “Spoonful” brought extra exposure to Willie Dixon, who wrote the song, and Howlin’ Wolf, who originally recorded it in 1960.