Good news about my favourite artist and best blues guitarist ever

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Jan 04, 2021, 16:57

Eric Clapton, In the Presence of the Lord

The bluesman has been haunted by God through his early years, his born-again period, and his recovery.

If testimony and evidence mean anything, Eric Clapton is in a good place. In February, he earned his 19th Grammy (for The Road to Escondido) and reunited with Blind Faith bandmate Steve Winwood for three widely acclaimed concerts at Madison Square Garden. The North Korean government invited Clapton to become the first rock musician to play the last bastion of true Communism; he has yet to decide whether to accept the invitation. In 2007, Clapton completed a 133-date world tour, hosted the second Crossroads Guitar Festival to raise money for his substance abuse center in Antigua, and hit The New York Times bestseller list with Clapton: The Autobiography. He's been happily married to Melia McEnery Clapton for six years, and they have three little girls who think the world of their daddy, without a thought for his troubled past.

This all seems pretty sedate for the man whose work with a Gibson Les Paul led counterculture enthusiasts to declare on subway walls that "Clapton is God," the man "adopted" by Muddy Waters and commissioned to carry on the legacy of the blues. But his road has seldom been smooth. From the age of 9 when he learned that he was born out of wedlock to his "auntie" and an unknown Canadian soldier, he struggled to find a safe place. Feelings of isolation and insecurity haunted him throughout life, drawing him to the gritty alienation of the blues. But there is a spiritual side of Clapton that was scarcely known. It almost always influenced what he thought and did, and the kind of music he wrote and played.

Clapton never set himself up as a model of Christian faith, and admits as much. He grew up in rural Surrey attending a local congregation of the Church of England, and in his


Jan 04, 2021, 17:35

I thought BB King was the greatest blues scale merchant in history ;)

Jan 04, 2021, 19:31

Matter of preference in individual choice, for me public opinion does not necessary justify the choice..slow blues versus ballad rock blues .incidentally I like his music (BB King) too (The Thrill is Gone) but to me Eric Clapton can sing anything...such a gift.

I can listen to him all day...he is able to strike you deep in the crusty dried out regions of the human heart. He had a very bumpy life and now has found true peace.

I cannot help but admire his courage too...a very human man with lots of faults but has overcome them. He's found what everyone needs. It's not his materialistic success or his music that stands out , it is simply what he is...a very normal person.

I just wish I could play the guitar like him.

Jan 04, 2021, 20:15

BB King, Eric Clapton, Buddy Guy and Jim Vaughn together.

Rock Me Baby...what a combination.

Jan 05, 2021, 12:21

If you're talking about Blues vocalists then Clapton doesn't get into the top ten for me. I don't personally class much of his music as blues. It's somewhere in between blues, rock and country. Semantics, I know, but if we're talking genre then it's probably best to be specific since most rock is based on blues and it becomes confusing if one isn't specific.

If you're talking about guitarists then BB King is the most borrowed-from of all time. Clapton himself used many King's licks. So did almost every other great guitarist.

If you're talking about cross-over blues then there is one guy that everyone from rockers to blues artists site as an influence...that is the genius that is Check Berry.

Jan 05, 2021, 12:39

BB King is Slow Rock Blues, Eric Clapton is Ballad Rock Blues. Each is outstanding in the right category. As I said whatever floats your boat...I like all music in their categories, even Classical depends on the mood. 

You mean Chuck Berry...not Blues really, named "Father of Rock 'n Roll"...influenced Lennon a lot.

So did Little Richard...he was dynamite.

And Jerry Lee Lewis.

Jan 05, 2021, 13:12

These African Americans could really sing...from the heart.

There was Soul too, Otis Redding, Percy Sledge and Wilson Picket.


Jan 05, 2021, 14:05

Indeed, $eb.

Berry had pure blues roots but moved over to rock. Hence me calling him a cross-over blues artist.

I like Clapton, and I guess it doesn't matter if we how we personally classify his genre. Only, I've been plaing guitar for many years so I become a bit sticky when it comes to these things...particularly the blues.

The very first scales that i learned were the bleus scales and that was because I'd always wanted to be able to improvise over both minor and major progressions and also to combine them. I'm still very greatfult to the gent that showed that shortcut to understanfing music theory.

And now, for the big contradiction...$panish scales and right-hand technique became my favorite and will probably hold that number one spot indefinately.  While blues guitarists use a pick and sometimes a slider, $panish guitarists use all five fingers, the back of the hand, flicks, nails and the palm in ways that can make the most simple chord progressions sound immesurably complex. Their style is also also not bound by can vary from the slowest music to more upbeat than many death metal bands can achieve. 

Bring me any song and I'll bet you that the Flamenco version sounds better than the original haha.

Jan 05, 2021, 15:11

Lovely fingerwork...beautiful tone...yes indeed the Spanish guitarists and their guitars are unique and probably incomparable. What a gift to be able to play like this.

Their standards are difficult if not impossible to beat in the pure sense of mastery.

Jan 05, 2021, 15:16

...and yet they are not that expensive unlike the electric...Robert Bouchetts (must be French) is $ 122500....the Fender Statocaster about 3 million US dollars.

But this is completely over shadowed by violins...The Lady Blunt Stradivarius goes for the whopping price of 11 million euros.

Back to guitars...Eric plays a Fender Stratocaster, whilst BB King used a Gibson  ES 355, George Harrison played a Gibson as well but a J-160E model.

Well when you earn what these guys earned, I suppose nothing but the best will do.

Jan 05, 2021, 16:13

George Harrisons best...of all the Beatles lyrics this a stand out...Harrison too was a genius....he started so young.

Nobody has been able to play this particular piece better than George.

Jan 05, 2021, 21:12

Gibson is my pick, Seb.

Perhaps the type of Strats that cost gazillions have better actions than the ones I've gotten my hands on but I certainly prefer the Gibson.

My collection is a Takamine classic guitar, PRS electric and a Washburn steel string. None of them are super expensive models but they do the job.

The nice thing about being more into the classic guitar is that I'm able to mostly avoid long discussions about electric rigs - something electric guitarists can do for hour upon annoying hour haha. 

Easy to get lost noodling on the PRS though. 

You really do seem to know and love your music. 

Since you have a Russian connection - do you ever listen to any classic Russian guitar? Some of those guys are also on another level. 

Here's a popular YouTube Russian guitarist playing Aerials from SOD.

Jan 05, 2021, 21:31

Mark Knopfler my favourite fingerstyle guitarist. This guy (Billy Strings) the most phenomenal flatpicker . . .

Jan 05, 2021, 21:39

Haha "I got 20 long years for some dust in a baggy"

Jan 05, 2021, 23:59

That Russian player is very good Plum.

Mark class in his field.

I also like Blue Grass a lot.

All strings are lovely instruments, guitars, banjo, fiddle, violin down to cellos and bass in classical.

Each requiring lots of talent and nibble fingers to play in different ways.

The banjo and fiddle...I guess having a good dose of Celtic blood explains it. The Irish really know how to "make merry" with their music.

On banjo's Mean Mary, fast banjo is Iron Horse and this one.

Jan 06, 2021, 01:10

Irish style of ballad that gets to me. The's just the way they do it.

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