Eric Clapton – guitar / vocals
Doyle Bramhall II – guitar / vocals
Derek Trucks – guitar
Chris Stainton – keyboards
Tim Carmon – keyboards
Willie Weeks – bass
Steve Jordan – drums
Michelle John – backing vocals
Sharon White – backing vocals
01. Tell The Truth
02. Key To The Highway
03. Got To Get Better In A Little While
04. Little Wing
05. Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad??
07. Outside Woman Blues
08. Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out
09. Running On Faith
10. Motherless Children
11. Little Queen Of Spades
12. Further On Up The Road
13. Wonderful Tonight
15. Cocaine (encore)
16. Crossroads (encore)
Review by Peter Hefford, Sydney
Tonight I may have just seen the closest thing I'm ever going to see to a Derek & the Dominos concert or jam session. The set list was the same as the first two Sydney shows and similar to the American, Japan & Far East legs of the tour. It is of course laden with Dominos numbers and I particularly like Eric's Derek & the Dominos era.
I saw Eric when he last visited these shores in 1990 and whilst I enjoyed seeing Eric on that occasion, tonight was something else! This was one for the guitar geeks (like me) and the music/EC purists.
This wasn't just an Eric Clapton concert, this tour is Eric Clapton AND BAND. Eric's backing band is full of stellar musicians and they are all fully featured courtesy of their magnanimous boss. And this band is technically superior to the Dominos (except Duane Allman) and has more fire-power.
It was great to see Chris Stainton on electric piano do some wonderful solos. Chris notably worked with Joe Cocker over the years and was on the legendary Mad Dogs & Englishmen tour in 1970. He has also played with Eric a lot over the years. Comes from Sheffield like Joe.
Drummer Steve Jordan, one-time Blues Brother & Keef side-man plays the drums like he's using a sledge-hammer. Willie Weeks was superb on bass. Great black rhythm section. After all, white men can't play the blues. Well Eric doesn't do too badly! I thought Eric did his best work on Little Queen of Spades.
Speaking of which, there was a sweet black angel on background vocals.
Guitarist Doyle Bramhall II was my pick of the 3 guitarists with his inventive, fluid & sometimes unconventional solos.
Derek Trucks was also a stand-out with some excellent slide guitar on his cherry red SG. Derek is a current member of the Allman Brothers and a nephew of Allman Brother Butch Trucks. Derek is rumoured to have been named after the Derek & the Dominos band. Derek (in concert with Eric) played the slide part on Layla that Duane Allman originally performed. So there was a kind of Allman connection there.
I enjoyed the sit-down acoustic set as I always enjoy Eric's tasteful acoustic playing. Drifting Blues played alone by Eric worked really well.
Other highlights for me were Motherless Children with the 3 guitarists all blazing away on slide guitar, the rendition of Crossroads in the encore and of course, Layla.
My only complaint, and it's not really a complaint, is that I would have loved to have seen Eric do just one number with a Gibson Les Paul, like he did in Japan. I'm one of these people who still dream of the time when Eric was "God" and still find Eric's (then revolutionary) Les Paul guitar tone on the Bluesbreakers and Fresh Cream albums as guitar heaven.
Oh, and by the way, I hope someone is recording & filming some of Eric's shows from the 2006/2007 world tour for a future DVD. Preferably from Japan on the nights the Les Paul and CS-336 got an airing. This tour must be preserved on DVD.
Very enjoyable night.
Review by Ian Bennie
My son and I attended Eric's final Sydney concert and we both agreed it was more than fantastic! We attended his opening Sydney concert we felt that Eric's solos were even MORE fiery and blistering than that night ! Which is amazing to say. The songs were the same and that was fine because I really liked them and in fact, wanted to hear them all again.
Eric's albums, 461 Ocean Boulevard and Slowhand have always been long time favourites for me and to hear him perform 'live' Motherless Children, Cocaine and Wonderful Tonight were major highlights. My son was just hoping to hear Layla and Eric didn't let him down. Like opening night, we again felt every second of his closing night was superb. The entire Band were stunning! Having really enjoyed seeing Deep Purple and U2 live, I enjoyed Eric the most, I don't think anything else I'll see will exceed his intensity and passion.
I waited 17 years to see Eric Clapton live and for me, he delivered a thousand times more than I could have imagined. Thanks Eric.
Review by Ed Gibbs
Having grown up in the same area as Eric, met him at various local events and seen him live dozens of times in the 1980s and 1990s, I was very excited to finally see him down under (my home since 1998). Being a third, nearly sold out night, though, I knew this wasn't going to have the same intensity, for want of a better word, as shows 1 and 2.
When the band ambled on stage, in fact, I was positively shocked at the lack of reaction from the crowd. Sure, it may have been a largely older audience (the first 15 rows of which had paid an outrageous $350 to be there), but I've never seen the Entertainment Centre so dead in my life. Virtually no one got to their feet until the band were leaving the stage for the last time, by which time a seemingly petulant star did a quick wave before marching off. The problem? The man's not playing for the crowd one iota.
Yes, the band are great, technically at least, but the show was predictable (the same set yet again) and the 'star' all but ignored the crowd. We could have been in a large pub - without the banter, that is. Casuality may be one thing, but if folk fork out hundreds of dollars to see a hero perform, people quite rightly expect him to do just that. The gig really got going towards the end, with a surprisingly believable Layla and a genuinely funky Cocaine - the only time when it seemed Eric was part of the band, not 'with band' - but having seen the likes of Bowie, Iggy, U2 and The Stones all work hard for a high-paying crowd, many of us left feeling like the old guy couldn't really give a f***. The quick exit said it all. The answer: open with a killer track, have crowd in the palm of your hand. Eric, sadly, didn't seem to give a rat's about that. Maybe that's why it's been 17 years...
Review by Roger Smith, Sydney
Tuesday night 30 January and Thursday February 1st. Saw Eric Clapton and his band at Sydney Entertainment Centre and what a treat it was. If anything, the Thursday night show surpassed the Tuesday show with more intensity and also a better mix of his vocals. Magical moments for me were many but one really special moment was Eric duetting with Derek ( which in itself has a lot of meanings!) on Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad. Towards the end of the song when it drifts into tiny rippling appegios it had my mind casting back to the times when Eric and Duanne duetted on the Layla sessions, with Derek Trucks having an awesome ability on the slide. Eric uses two other guitarists in his band and their talents were fully displayed. Til now I had never fully realized the benefits of using three guitarists but the colours they all painted with just added so much to the music. The whole band was on fire and each musician is a soloist in their own right and each was allowed to shine on the night, without one ounce of indulgence. Just the pure magic of intensifying the music. My personal highlight was hearing Little Wing. Love his version of this great Hendrix song. It was a joy and...Suffice to say...He was wonderful tonight.