Eric Clapton had a long history on guitar before he released his first, eponymous solo album in 1970. Until this point he had played with all sorts of blues-rock based groups such as The Yardbirds, All-Stars, The Bluesbreakers, The Powerhouse, and, most notably — with Cream and the supergroup Blind Faith.
In this album, however, Eric shifts his focus towards pop, and sadly so. This album does feature a couple of nice songs like After Midnight and, of course, Let it Rain, but the rest of the songs are pretty much tasteless, and fail to excite the mind of those who are more deeply accustomed with music. Eric‘s tremendous potential as a blues guitarist stays unrealised.
Why 4 stars out of five then? For one, the pop songs, in spite of lacking colour, are performed with quality and precision. But the main reason lies in the amazing outtakes, that were probably contrasting with the overall pop sound! Blues in “A” is a 10-minute jam that surpasses the level of all the other songs on the album, and Clapton comes to present his talent in an environment where he can do it the best way. Teasin’, which was made in collaboration with King Curtis, lasts only for 2 minutes, but is just as enjoyable, whereas the original version of Let it Rain, called She Rides, gives new perspective to the well known hit.
Eric Clapton — Blues in “A”
Eric Clapton — She Rides