Eric Clapton – 24 Nights (1991)

ECFrontCover124 Nights is the fifth live album by Eric Clapton, recorded at the Royal Albert Hall in London, England, in 1990 and 1991. It was released on 8 October 1991.

The album is a “best of” from the 42 concerts Eric Clapton did at the Royal Albert Hall in those two years. Clapton set a record by playing a run of 24 nights at the London Royal Albert Hall between 5 February and 9 March 1991, following an 18-night run in 1990. Clapton reportedly was not satisfied with the 1990 concert recordings and delayed the release of a CD until after the “24 Nights” of the 1991 dates. These concerts were performed with 4 different instrumental formations, 4-piece, blues, 9-piece and orchestra nights, the last featuring the National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Michael Kamen. The cover illustration is by Peter Blake.

The 4-piece recordings “Running on Faith”, “White Room” and “Sunshine of Your Love” included on the CD and DVD were recorded on 24 January 1990. The band consisted of Clapton with bassist Nathan East, drummer Steve Ferrone and keyboardist Greg Phillinganes. The Blues Band titles “Worried Life Blues”, “Watch Yourself” and “Have You Ever Loved a Woman” Clapton recorded with Buddy Guy and Robert Cray were shot and recorded on 5 February 1990. The last of the 1990 live recording session took place on 9 February 1990 recording the Orchestra Night. “Bell Bottom Blues”, “Hard Times” and “Edge of Darkness” were used on both the CD and video recording.

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On 10 February 1991, Clapton recorded “Badge” for the CD release. Eight days later the concert for “Pretending”, “Bad Love”, “Old Love” and “Wonderful Tonight” featuring the 9-piece band lineup took place. “No Alibis”, “I Shot The Sheriff” and “Cocaine” had been released on various CD singles of “Wonderful Tonight” since. The versions of “Old Love”, “Wonderful Tonight” and “Pretending” (2nd solo only) on the “24 Nights” video are different from their album counterparts, but they were not taken from the previous night’s show. They may even have been taken the year before. The song “Hoodoo Man” featuring Jimmie Vaughan was recorded on 28 February 1991. (by wikipedia)

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Eric Clapton, who had not released a live album since 1980, had several good reasons to release one in the early ’90s. For one thing, his spare backup band of keyboardist Greg Phillinganes, bassist Nathan East, and drummer Steve Ferrone was his best live unit ever, and its powerful live versions of Cream classics like “White Room” and “Sunshine of Your Love” deserved to be documented. For another, since 1987 Clapton had been playing an annual series of concerts at the Royal Albert Hall in London, putting together various special shows (blues nights, orchestral nights, etc.). 24 Nights, a double album, was culled from two years of such shows, 1990 and 1991, and it demonstrated the breadth of Clapton’s work, from his hot regular band to assemblages of bluesmen like Buddy Guy and Robert Cray to examples of his soundtrack work with an orchestra led by Michael Kamen.

EricClapton1990

The result was an album that came across as a lavishly constructed retrospective and a testament to Clapton’s musical stature. But it made little impact upon release (though it quickly went gold), perhaps because events overcame it — three months later, Clapton’s elegy for his baby son, “Tears in Heaven,” was all over the radio, and a few months after that he was redefining himself on MTV Unplugged — a live show as austere as 24 Nights was grand. Still, it would be hard to find a more thorough demonstration of Clapton’s abilities than the one presented here. (by William Ruhlmann)

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Personnel:
Eric Clapton (guitar, vocals)
Nathan East (bass, vocals)
Steve Ferrone (drums)
Greg Phillinganes (keyboards, background vocals)
+
Alan Clark (keyboards on 14.)
Ray Cooper (percussion on 09. – 15.)
Richard Cousins (bass on 05. – 07.
Robert Cray (guitar on 05 – 07.
Buddy Guy (guitar, on 05. – 07
Johnnie Johnson (piano on 05. – 08.
Chuck Leavell (keyboards on 08. – 15.)
Jamie Oldaker (drums on 05. – 08.
Phil Palmer (guitar on 09. – 15.)
Jerry Portnoy (harmonica on 08.)
Ed Shearmur (keyboards on 14. + 15.)
Joey Spampinato (bass on 08.)
Jimmie Vaughan (guitar on 08.)
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background vocals (on 09. – 15.)
Katie Kissoon – Tessa Niles
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The National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Micheal Kamen (on 14. + 15.)

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Tracklist:
01. Badge (Clapton/Harrison) 6.51
02. Running On Faith (Williams) 6-49
03. White Room (Bruce/Brown) 6.10
04. Sunshine Of Your Love (Bruce/Brown/Clapton) 9.07
05. Watch Yourself (Guy) 5.39
06. Have You Ever Loved A Woman (Myles) 6.52
07. Worried Life Blues (Merriweather) 5.28
08. Hoodoo Man (Wells) 5.40
09. Pretending (Williams) 7.08
10. Bad Love (Clapton/Jones) 6.25
11. Old Love (Clapton/Dray) 13.01
12. Wonderful Tonight (Clapton) 9.07
13. Bell Bottom Blues (Clapton) 6.38
14. Hard Times (Charles) 3.45
15. Edge Of Darkness (Clapton/Kamen) 6.29
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Various Artists – The Color Of Money (OST) (1986)

FrontCover1The Color of Money is a 1986 American drama film directed by Martin Scorsese from a screenplay by Richard Price, based on the 1984 novel of the same name by Walter Tevis. The film stars Paul Newman and Tom Cruise, with Mary Elizabeth Mastrantonio, Helen Shaver, and John Turturro in supporting roles. It features an original score by Robbie Robertson.

Newman won the Academy Award for Best Actor for his performance, his first Oscar win after eight nominations, seven of them for Best Actor.

The film continues the story of pool hustler and stakehorse Edward “Fast Eddie” Felson from Tevis’ first novel, The Hustler (1959), with Newman reprising his role from the 1961 film adaptation. It begins more than 25 years after the events of the previous film, with Eddie retired from the pool circuit. Although Tevis did author a screenplay, adapting the storyline from his novel, the filmmakers decided not to use it, instead crafting an entirely different story under Tevis’ title.

Eddie Felson is a former pool hustler turned successful liquor salesman. One night he meets Vincent Lauria, a young, charismatic pool player and video gamer who plays small-time nine-ball games while working as a sales clerk at a toy store. Eddie, who still stakes bets for players, persuades Vincent and girlfriend/manager Carmen to go on the road, where he can teach Vincent how to make much more money through hustling pool.

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With Eddie staking their bets, Vincent visits a series of billiard halls where Eddie tries to teach him that “pool excellence is not about excellent pool.” Although Carmen is a quick study, Vincent chafes at Eddie’s scams, which routinely require him to play well below his abilities. Eventually, Fast Eddie picks up a cue himself, and does well in several games, but is taken in by a pool shark named Amos. Humiliated, Eddie leaves Vincent and Carmen with enough money to make it to the championships in Atlantic City.

ColorOfMoney02Wearing new prescription eyeglasses, Eddie begins working out and practicing. He enters the 9-ball tournament in Atlantic City and, after several victories, finds himself facing off against a more world-wise Vincent. He beats Vincent, but later, when he is celebrating with girlfriend Janelle, Vincent arrives and informs Eddie that he intentionally lost in order to collect on a bet. He gives Eddie $8,000 as his “cut.” During his semi-final match against Kennedy, Eddie sees his reflection in the cue ball; disgruntled, he chooses to forfeit the game.

Out-hustled again, Eddie returns the money, saying that he wants to beat Vincent legitimately. The two set up a private match, where Eddie informs Vincent that if he doesn’t beat him now, he will in the future because “I’m back!” (by wikipedia)

Ex-Band songwriter/guitarist Robbie Robertson put together this soundtrack, which allowed him to collaborate with blues master Willie Dixon and jazz master Gil Evans, though it was his collaboration with Eric Clapton that produced the album’s hit song, “It’s in the Way That You Use It.” Also featured: Don Henley, Robert Palmer (three tracks), and B. B. King. (by William Ruhlmann)

Okay, here you´ll find a lot of rare tracks … and: this was the sound of the Eighties !

And “Werewolves Of London” was of course stealed/borrowed from Lynyrd Skynrd (“Sweet Home Alabama”).

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Tracklist:
01. Don Henley: Who Owns This Place? (Henley/Kortchmar/Souther) 4.48
02. Eric Clapton: It’s In The Way That You Use It (Clapton/Robertson) 3.56
03. Robert Palmer: Let Yourself In For It (Palmer) 5.18
04. Willie Dixon: Don’t Tell Me Nothin’ (Dixon) 4.43
05. Mark Knopfler: Two Brothers And A Stranger (Knopfler) 2.41
06. B.B. King: Standing On The Edge Of Love (Williams) 3.53
07. Robbie Robertson + Gil Evans: Modern Blues (Robertson) 2.55
08. Warren Zevon: Werewolves Of London (Marinell/Wachtel/Zevon) 3.21
09. Robert Palmer: My Baby’s In Love With Another Guy (Brightman/Lucie) 2.27
10. Robbie Robertson + Gil Evans: The Main Title (Robertson) 2.44

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Eric Clapton – No Reason To Cry (1976)

FrontCover1No Reason to Cry is a 1976 album by Eric Clapton, released for both Polydor and RSO records. The album was released in compact disc format on October 25, 1990.[citation needed]No Reason to Cry is a 1976 album by Eric Clapton, released for both Polydor and RSO records.

The album was recorded at The Band’s Shangri-la Studios in March 1976, and included involvement from all five members; Rick Danko shared vocals with Clapton on “All Our Past Times,” which he co-wrote with Clapton.

The album also includes a duet with Bob Dylan on his otherwise unreleased song “Sign Language.” The booklet in Bob Dylan’s box set The Bootleg Series Volumes 1–3 (Rare & Unreleased) 1961–1991 describes his involvement in this album: “Dylan dropped by and was just hanging out, living in a tent at the bottom of the garden. He would sneak into the studio to see what was going on. Dylan offered his new, unrecorded song “Seven Days” to Clapton. Clapton passed on it, but Ron Wood took him up on the offer and released it on his third solo album Gimme Some Neck”. The song “Innocent Times” is sung by Marcy Levy, who also shared vocals with Clapton on “Hungry.”

No Reason to Cry is one of Clapton’s most successful international albums from the 1970s. The release reached the Top 30 in seven national music album charts, reaching the Top 10 in United Kingdom (peaking at number eight) and in the Netherlands, where the studio release ranked on position nine. The album was certified with a platinum in the United Kingdom. In Norway and the United States, No Reason to Cry charted at #13 and #15. In New Zealand and Sweden, the 1976 album positioned itself on number 18 and 24.

Rolling Stone journalist Dave Marsh finds, the album recordings are “much more mélange than masterpiece”.  Robert Christgau rated the album with a “B-” and calls the album “a well-made, rather likable rock and roll LP”, noting the “singing is eloquent and the instrumental signature an almost irresistible pleasure” (by wikipedia)

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When he gave a speech inducting the Band into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame, Eric Clapton said that after he heard their debut album, Music from Big Pink, he wanted to join the group, the fact that they already had a guitarist in Robbie Robertson notwithstanding. In the winter of 1975-1976, when he cut No Reason to Cry at the Band’s Shangri-La Studio in Malibu, California, he came as close as he ever would to realizing that desire. Clapton is a musical chameleon; though some of No Reason to Cry is identifiable as the kind of pop/rock Clapton had been making since the start of his solo career (the best of it being “Hello Old Friend,” which became his first Top 40 single in two years), the most memorable music on the album occurs when Clapton is collaborating with members of the Band and other guests. He duets with Band bassist Rick Danko on Danko’s “All Our Past Times,” and with Bob Dylan on Dylan’s “Sign Language,” as Robertson’s distinctive lead guitar is heard rather than Clapton’s. As a result, the album is a good purchase for fans of Bob Dylan and the Band, but not necessarily for those of Eric Clapton. (by William Ruhlmann)

And I cant agree with this review … I guess, this is one of Clapton´s finest albums in the Seventies … great music, and great vocals … listen to “Carnival” or “Hungry”

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Personnel:
Eric Clapton (guitar, vocals)
Rick Danko (bass)
Terry Danko (percussion)
Jesse Ed Davis (guitar)
Bobby Ellis (trumpet)
Georgie Fame (keyboards)
Albhy Galuten (piano)
Levon Helm (drums)
Garth Hudson (keyboards, saxophone)
Marcy Levy (vocals)
Richard Manuel (drums)
Ralph Moss (percussion)
Jamie Oldaker (drums)
Billy Preston (keyboards)
Carl Radle (bass)
Robbie Robertson (guitar, keyboards)
Sergio Rodriguez (percussion)
Dicky Simms (keyboards)
George Terry (guitar)
Wah Wah Watson (guitar)
Ron Wood (guitar)
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Bob Dylan (vocals on 03.)
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background vocals:
Sandy Castle – Yvonne Elliman – Chris Jagger

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Tracklist:
01. Beautiful Thing (Danko/Manuel) 4:26
02. Carnival (Clapton) 3:44
03. Sign Language (Dylan) 2:58
04. County Jail Blues (Fields) 4:00
05. All Our Past Times (Clapton/Danko) 4:40
06. Hello Old Friend (Clapton) 3:36
07. Double Trouble (Rush) 4:23
08. Innocent Times (Clapton/Levy) 4:11
09. Hungry (Levy/Simms) 4:39
10. Black Summer Rain (Clapton) 4:55
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11. Last Night (Jacobs) 4.51

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Eric Clapton – The Man & His Music (VHS rip) (1990)

frontcover1Since a few days I have the oppurtunity, to rip old VHS tapes for this blog. I will start with an Eric Clapton documentary, released in 1990:

This documentary about Eric Clapton created for The Southbank Show (BBC) 1987.

It is a mark of his genius that “Clapton is God” was to become a common piece of graffiti in Britain during he 60´s and 70´s. This tribute from The Southbank Show, packed with many of Clapton´s famous tracks including “Layla” and “Wonderful Tonight”, is a unique look at the man and his music.

From the day his grandmother brought him an electric guitar there was no doubt where the young Eric was bound. “The Yardbirds” and “The Blues Breakers” where the early vehicles for “Slow Hand” but most important of all where the years with “Cream” – recaptured here with vintage footage.

That Clapton is able to talk frankly and freely about his former drug and alcohol related problems, underlines the inner resilience of an exceptional man.

Also including footage of his magnificent performance at the Live Aid concert, this is a video which will captivate his fans everywhere (take from linernotes).

On thsi video you can see a very rare jam between Eric & Jack Bruce … recorded for this documentation als a special !

And here are some pics from the movie:

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(click the pic to enlarge)

Note: Please don´t forget, that this ia a rip from an old VHS tape ! Maybe more old tapes like this (including rare private shots) will come.

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Various Artists – Raw Blues (1967)

FrontCover1From this modest beginning Mike Vernon was eventually able to lure several ‘name’ Stateside blues men to ‘The Supreme Record Company’s’ then head offices on London’s Albert Embankment, for the purpose of inking a recording contract, and thereafter driving them to West Hampstead — Decca’s studio complex. Simultaneously, his was the influence which convinced some of Britain’s finest home-grown exponents of the genre to follow a similar course.

This package, aptly titled Raw Blues, was assembled by Mike and issued on Decca’s subsidiary ‘Ace Of Clubs’ label in January 1967 (ACL (Mono)/SCL (Stereo) 1220). An intriguing collection of artifacts, its wetter of big name participants may now be appreciated through the sophisticated medium of sound which is a compact disc. The technology may be smoother these days, but the blues remain as raw as ever…

A few details about the contents and its protagonists wouldn’t go amiss: Bom Jackson, Mississippi, on 21 st March 1930, Otis Spann shared his parents affections with two brothers and two sisters. Product of a musically inclined family, his father Frank Euston Spann played piano and mother Josephine was formerly a guitarist with Memphis Minnie, a top vocalist who knew a good picker when she heard one, having married another Jackson six-string resident, Joe McCoy (Kansas Joe). Mot surprisingly, Otis took to music like a duck to water, adopting piano as his chosen Instrument Largely self-taught, in later life he always acknowledged the influence Big Maceo Merriweather had upon his style. Gaining confidence as a result of forming a small band with some other local juveniles, when he heard about a neighbourhood talent competition happening at the Alamo Theatre he entered and won — as a singer — performing Coot Davis’ Four O’clock Blues.

CurtisJonesCurtis Jones

With the passing years he pursued medical studies at Jackson’s Campbell College in the hope of becoming a doctor. When not buried in textbooks, he displayed a sporting prowess at boxing and football, briefly even turning professional at the latter. Between 1946 and ’51 the U.S. Army called upon his time, but after discharge he relinquished all thoughts of any other occupation than music and moved to Chicago. The rest of the family had domiciled themselves there two years earlier, when mother died. Swiftly contacted by Muddy Waters, Otis joined the great guitarist/vocalist and stayed with his outfit for many years thereafter, although between 1952 and the time of this recording he’d also supplied studio accompaniment for such legends as Chuck Berry, Howlin’ Wolf, Bo Diddley and Lowell Fulson.

Visiting Britain in May 1964 for a tour, our subject recorded an acclaimed Decca LP: The Blues Of Otis Spann (LK 4615). Included here are the four additional cuts from that London session of May 4th: Pretty Girls Everywhere (a), My Home In The Desert and the McKinley Morganfield (alias Muddy Waters) duo Country Boy and You’re Gonna Need My Help. Personnel: Otis Spann (Vocal, Piano); ‘Brother’ (Guitar); Ransom K nowli ng (Bass); Little Willie Smith (Drums); add Eric Clapton (Gtr.) on (a) only. Further south in New Orleans, seaport metropolis of Louisiana, on Independence Day 1910, was bom William Thomas ‘Champion Jack’ Dupree. His father was French, while mother was a descendant of the Cherokee Indian tribe.

Tragically, both were killed when the family home burnt down during his seventh year. After spending the next seven cooped up in an institution he ran away, but not before he’d mastered the basics of singing and playing piano. Thereafter he maintained his existence by thumping the untuned pianos of seedy dubs and houses of ill-repute, acquiring the technique known as’ Barrelhouse’ playing thanks to prominent exponent of the art Willie Hall, otherwise billed as Drive ’em Down.

ChampionJackDupreeChampion Jack Dupree

The Depression found our subject attempting to make ends meet by taking up boxing—whence ‘Champion Jack’ — but by the mid-Thirties he’d joined forces with Cotton Club keyboarder Leroy Carr. Upon the tatter’s early death Jack was offered the unfortunate vacancy, which he accepted. In 1940 the Okeh label added him to their roster; it was the first of a multitude of labels great and small to do so over the next thirty years, including King — where he notched a big hit on the R ‘ n’ B charts, Walkingthe Blues, in 1955-and Atlantic.

As blues music gained European popularity through the Fifties, many big names were lured from America to tour and occasionally record as a bonus. Big Bill Broonzy was instrumental in persuading Dupree to take the plunge, and he liked it so much that by 1960 he’d married an English giri half his age and settled in Zurich, Switzerland.  From here he was able to commute around Europe, finding appreciative audiences for his set which at that time still included some dance routines — early in his career he’d worked in vaudeville performing the tap variety.

By 1965 he was living in and working out of Denmark’s capital, and the following February Mike Vernon signed him to a three album deal for Decca. The first of these, From New Orleans To Chicago (LK 4747), hit the shops in April, and included here are the two tracks from those sessions which were omitted through lack of space: Calcutta Blues (a) and the Eddie Boyd penned 24 Hours. Backed by an all-star British group, Now deservedly billed as ‘The Father Of British Blues’, John Mayall is rightly predominant on this collection. As one of the handful of pioneers responsible for popularizing the style in the U.K., his contribution cannot be overstated.

The Bluesbreakers became a veritable ‘nursery’ for so many future stars in their formative years, and amongst the home grown contingent on display here are some of the finest. Of his two solo billings, the impassioned Burn Out Your Blind Eyes and Milkman Strut, this second title prevailed, according to Vernon’s original album sleeve note, when the daily delivery to the studios saw the dairy employee wander in midway through a ‘take’, deposit his crate, and nonchalantly walk out slamming the door behind him…

OtisSpannOtis Spann

Of John’s pairing with organist Steve Anglo, it may now be revealed that for Anglo read Winwood. Owing to contractual obligations elsewhere he could not appear under his true identity when the album was published. Rhythm section duties on Long Night belonged to then Bluesbreakers’ members John McVie (Bass) and drummer Aynsley Dunbar.

The Mayall and Clapton liaisons here, John’s Lonely Years and Eric’s instrumental Bernard Jenkins, were cut at Mike’s instigation and originally issued as a back-to-back limited edition 45 on his own Purdah label. Dating from the period between the players’ joint collaborations under contract to firstly Andrew Oldhams Immediate company and then Decca, (Bluesbreakers era), both were committed through a single microphone in the middle of the capital’s Wessex Studios in Soho, hence the unusual sound.

At the time of its taping, Peter Green had recently been recruited to the Mayall ranks as Eric’s axe wielding replacement. On his own composition, Evil Woman Blues, he displayed a mature prowess at both playing and singing despite his relative lack of experience. In time, of course, he formed Fleetwood Mac, but that’s another story… Legendary purveyors of the blues from both sides of the Atlantic are gathered together in this one historical little collocation. We all owe grateful thanks to Mike Vernon for making it possible. Why wait? Just play on… (by John Tracy)

What a line-up !!!

Eric ClaptonEric Clapton, 1966

Personnel:
Eric Clapton (guitar, vocals)
Jack Fallon (bass)
Aynsley Dunbar (drums)
Champion Jack Dupree (piano, vocals)
Peter Green (guitar, vocals)
Keef Hartley (drums)
Curtis Jones (piano, vocals)
Ransom Knowling -(bass)
Alexis Korner (guitar)
John Mayall (guitar, harmonica, piano, vocals)
John Mcvie (bass)
Malcolm Pool (bass)
Little Willie Smith (drums)
Otis Spann (piano, vocals)
Eddie Taylor (drums)
Steve “Anglo” Winwood (organ)

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Tracklist:
01. Otis Spann: Pretty Girls Everywhere (Church/Williams) 2.57
02. John Mayall: Burn Out Your Blind Eyes (Mayall) 3.00
03. Champion Jack Dupree: Calcutta Blues (Unknown) 4.00
04. John Mayall & Steve Anglo: Long Night (Mayall,/Anglo) 2.04
05. Otis Spann: Country Boy (Morganfiled) 3.34
06. Curtis Jones: You Got Good Business (Jones) 3.23
07. John Mayall & Eric Clapton: Lonely Years (Mayall) 3.21
08. Peter Green & John Mayall: Evil Woman Blues (Green) 4.04
09. Otis Spann: My Home In The Desert (Unknown) 4.20
10. John Mayall: Milkman Strut (Mayall) 2.26
11. Champion Jack Dupree: 24 Hours (Boyd) 4.07
12. Curtis Jones: Roll Me Over (Jones) 2.38
13. John Mayall & Eric Clapton: Bernard Jenkins (Clapton) 3.50
14. Otis Spann: You Gonna Need My Help (Morganfield) 3.25

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Eric Clapton – 24 Nights (1991)

ECFrontCover124 Nights is a live album by Eric Clapton, recorded at the Royal Albert Hall in London, England, in 1990 and 1991. It was released on 8 October 1991.

The album is a “best of” from the 42 concerts Eric Clapton did at the Royal Albert Hall in those two years. Clapton set a record by playing a run of 24 nights at the London Royal Albert Hall between 5 February and 9 March 1991, following an 18-night run in 1990. Clapton reportedly was not satisfied with the 1990 concert recordings and delayed the release of a CD until after the “24 Nights” of the 1991 dates. These concerts were performed with 4 different instrumental formations, 4-piece, blues, 9-piece and orchestra nights, the last featuring the National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Michael Kamen. The cover illustration is by Peter Blake.

The 4-piece recordings “Running on Faith”, “White Room” and “Sunshine of Your Love” featured on the CD and DVD were recorded on 24 January 1990. The band featured bassist Nathan East, drummer Steve Ferrone and keyboardist Greg Phillinganes. The Blues Band titles “Worried Life Blues”, “Watch Yourself” and “Have You Ever Loved a Woman” Clapton recorded with Buddy Guy and Robert Cray were shot and recorded on 5 February in 1990. The last of the 1990 live recording session took place on 9 February 1990 recording the Orchestra Night. “Bell Bottom Blues”, “Hard Times” and “Edge of Darkness” were used on both the CD and video recording. On 10 February 1991, Clapton recorded “Badge” for the CD release. Eight days later the concert for “Pretending”, “Bad Love”, “Old Love” and “Wonderful Tonight” featuring the 9-piece band lineup took place. “No Alibis”, “I Shot The Sheriff” and “Cocaine” had been released on various CD singles of “Wonderful Tonight” since. The versions of “Old Love”, “Wonderful Tonight” and “Pretending” (2nd solo only) on the “24 Nights” video are different from their album counterparts, but they were not taken from the previous night’s show. They may even have been taken the year before. The song “Hoodoo Man” featuring Jimmie Vaughan was recorded on 28 February 1991. (by wikipedia)

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Eric Clapton, who had not released a live album since 1980, had several good reasons to release one in the early ’90s. For one thing, his spare backup band of keyboardist Greg Phillinganes, bassist Nathan East, and drummer Steve Ferrone was his best live unit ever, and its powerful live versions of Cream classics like “White Room” and “Sunshine of Your Love” deserved to be documented. For another, since 1987 Clapton had been playing an annual series of concerts at the Royal Albert Hall in London, putting together various special shows (blues nights, orchestral nights, etc.). 24 Nights, a double album, was culled from two years of such shows, 1990 and 1991, and it demonstrated the breadth of Clapton’s work, from his hot regular band to assemblages of bluesmen like Buddy Guy and Robert Cray to examples of his soundtrack work with an orchestra led by Michael Kamen. The result was an album that came across as a lavishly constructed retrospective and a testament to Clapton’s musical stature. But it made little impact upon release (though it quickly went gold), perhaps because events overcame it — three months later, Clapton’s elegy for his baby son, “Tears in Heaven,” was all over the radio, and a few months after that he was redefining himself on MTV Unplugged — a live show as austere as 24 Nights was grand. Still, it would be hard to find a more thorough demonstration of Clapton’s abilities than the one presented here. (by William Ruhlmann)

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Personnel:
Eric Clapton (guitar, vocals)
Nathan East (bass, vocals)
Steve Ferrone (drums)
Greg Phillinganes (keyboards, vocals)
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Alan Clark (keyboards on 13. – 15.)
Phil Collins (tambourine on 04.)
Ray Cooper (percussion on 09.- 15.)
Robert Cray (guitar on 05. – 07.)
Richard Cousins (bass on 05. – 07.)
Buddy Guy (guitar on 05. – 07.)
Johnnie Johnson (piano on 05. – 08.)
Katie Kissoon (background vocals on 09. – 13.)
Chuck Leavell (keyboards on 08., 09.)
Tessa Niles (background vocals on 09. – 13.)
Jamie Oldaker (drums on 05. – 08.)
Phil Palmer (guitar on 09. – 13.)
Jerry Portnoy (harmonica on 08.)
Ed Shearmur (keyboards on 14. – 15.)
Joey Spampinato (bass on 08.)
Jimmie Vaughan (guitar on 08.)
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National Philharmonic Orchestra conducted by Michael Kamen (14. – 15.)

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Tracklist:

CD 1:
01. Badge (Clapton/Harrison) 6.51
02. Running On Faith (Williams) 6.49
03. White Room (Jack Bruce/Pete Brown) – 6:10
04. Sunshine Of Your Love (Bruce/Brown/Clapton) 9.11
05. Watch Yourself (Guy) 5.39
06. Have You Ever Loved A Woman (Myles) 6.52
07. Worried Life Blues (Merriweather) 5.28
08. Hoodoo Man (Wells) 5.41

CD 2:
09. Pretending (Williams) 7.08
10. Bad Love (Clapton/Jones) 6.25
11. Old Love (Clapton/Cray) 13.01
12. Wonderful Tonight (Clapton) 9.11
13. Bell Bottom Blues (Clapton) 6.39
14. Hard Times (Charles) 3.45
15. Edge Of Darkness (Clapton/Kamen) 6.30

 

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Eric Clapton – Jersey City (1974)

FrontCover1On the road to promote 461 Ocean Boulevard, Eric Clapton must have disappointed his fans when he played only three tracks from the new album – Let It Grow, Willie And The Hand Jive and Get Ready.

One posting on the internet says that in this show, Eric Clapton was very “loose” (that is, drunk), especially on vocals. Whether he was “loose” or drunk, he was in a fairly mellow mood, dragging out the gospel-ish Let It Grow. But he was not so out-of-it that he couldn’t play – Let It Rain has a nice jam at the end (after which Clapton says to the crowd, “don’t mind if I have a drink”) and he gets into the groove on Key To The Highway.

But then Clapton must have a lot on his mind to contend with. After his drug-addled days, his record company might be thinking that Clapton wouldn’t last the distance – hence they taped practically every show on this tour and eventually released the rather brief EC Was Here. Then he had Yvonne Elliman as backing vocalist. Elliman was married to Bill Oakes, the president of RSO Records; Oakes introduced her to Clapton, who “invited” Elliman to sing backup vocals on I Shot The Sheriff. “Invited” is probably a too-polite term. On his own Clapton was probably still thinking of Patti Harrison (hence the recurrence of Badge, a song written with George Harrison). But he seemed to have gritted his teeth somewhat and carried on – otherwise why would he open his shows on the 1974 tour with Charlie Chaplin’s Smile, with the happy-sad lyric, “Smile though your heart is aching”?

EricClapton01While Willie And The Hand Jive has existed with a faster tempo, here, it sort of shares the same terrain as the reggae-inflected I Shot The Sheriff (which is sorely missed). Though many might disagree, this was not a show of guitar artistry or pyrotechnics – though there was some outstanding playing on Have You Ever Loved A Woman. The key word is groove, as this excellent soundboard recording makes clear. Take Badge for instance. While the song is a Cream/Clapton classic, he lets the intro run on and on (because it grooves) and one keeps expecting Carlos Santana to jump in!

As a treat, Freddie King appears on Have You Ever Loved A Woman and Little Queenie.

These tracks originally appeared in the Undercover Box Set (Mid Valley Records). Thanks to ECMusicMan for sharing them.

Recorded live at Roosevelt Stadium, Jersey City, New Jersey, July 7, 1974

AlternateFront+BackCoverAlternate front+backcover (with additional tracks)

Personnel:
Eric Clapton (guitar, vocals)
Yvonne Elliman (vocals)
Carl Radle (bass)
George Terry (guitar)
Jamie Oldaker (drums)
Dick Sims (keyboards)
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Freddie King (guitar, vocals on 10. + 11.)

EricClapton02Tracklist:
01. Smile (Clapton) 1.40
02. Let It Grow (Clapton) 7.35
03. Let It Rain (D. Bramlett/B. Bramlett/Clapton) 10.12
04. Key To The Highway ( Segar/Broonzy) 5.43
05. Willie And The Hand Jive (Otis) 4.56
06. Get Ready (Clapton/Elliman) 7.08
07. Presence Of The Lord (Clapton) 2.03
08. Badge (Clapton/Harrison) 3.58
09. Tell The Truth (Clapton/Whitlock) 8.07
10. Have You Ever Loved A Woman (Myles) 15.18
11. Little Queenie (Berry) 7.14

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