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
02. Got To Get Better In A Little While
03. Old Love
05. Motherless Children
07. Key to The Highway
08. Outside Woman Blues
09. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out
10. Running On Faith
11. After Midnight
12. Little Queen Of Spades
13. Tell The Truth
14. Wonderful Tonight
17. Crossroads (encore)
Review by Jii Aoi
First reaction: A very good show despite that Further On Up The Road was dropped from the set. It didn't reach the unparalleled hight of the third night though -- and it was predictable. Up to the first solo of After Midnight, EC introduced another new axe. Most people reported it was an ES-335 but I noticed the size was somewhat smaller and according to the net source, it was actually CS-356 without Bigsby...
Review by Paul Cook
Another great show this evening here at Osaka Jo Hall, from start to end the entire band were on song. They were constantly laughing and joking among themselves suggesting that they were enjoying themselves to the same extent as the crowd.
Eric got of to good start with some blistering fretwork in Pretending, he then blew us all away during a powerhouse `Got to get better` with everynote played and sung like he really meant it. Michelle and Sharon are singing their hearts out at the moment, they are so tuned in. Without doubt the best backing vocals EC has ever had (sorry Katie and Tessa - we love ya both but these girls are unreal) a lot of the fans will argue that the Yvonne and Marcy backing vocals were superior but I can fully justify my comments on the shows I have witnessed here!!
The crowd had been on it`s feet from the moment the band walked up onto the stage, with Eric in this kind of form there was no way that was gonna change, although they did give their feet a welcome break during the unplugged section.
Next up `Old love` which was great, ec playing some great guitar throughout. My only criticism for OL is Tim`s solo. He simply has to cut the treble frequency from his rig. Audience members around us were holding their ears. If there had been any blind folk in tonight their dogs would have been howling for their lives. In 98 we all accepted it as a new thing and hoped it would get lost forever, sadly 8 years on we are still experiencing this ridiculous noise that ruins a beautiful song - let`s hope Tim gets some new toys for Christmas.
Anyday was stunning as usual, Derek playing beautifully, this boy is special and he can only improve. When ec retires someday we may have our new hero in DT. Motherless children really rocked tonight, Steve Jordan punishing his kit with that great feel he has. I was not over impressed with Steve Jordan in the UK, but to be fair who could follow the craft of Steve Gadd. In Japan however he has delivered the goods, every night he has been awesome. He plays a great fill at the end of `Pretending` that sets the mood.
Chairs placed centre stage and the acoustic set got underway with Clapton playing a solo version of `driftin` for the second night running (tonight played fingerstyle and yesterday he used a pick - one for the trainspotters). It still amazes me that one man and a Martin acoustic can hold an audience`s attention with such authority.
Key to the Highway followed minus the confusion onstage between Doyle and Eric. Last night Eric carried on singing when he should have let Doyle sing his verse. Mr Bramhall is playing some good harp on ktth, but he ain`t no Jerry Portnoy.
Outside woman blues was really good tonight with Eric shouting `I`ll take it` when a solo gap normally filled by DT or DB came round. I am a huge fan of the Cream version of this song, and this acoustic variation does not disappoint. The crowd clapped along enthusiastically to `Nobody knows you` before we were treated to a very nice rendition of `Running on faith` where Derek Trucks played the most wonderful slide solo.
So now it was time for the band to get back on their feet for the second half of the show. Lee Dickson walks out with a cherry red 335 and I thought here we go again. The band burst into After Midnight and Eric was strumming away quite happily, he takes his first solo break and shook his head. Lee ran back on and they swapped the 335 for a strat. EC delivered some great solo work on `Midnight` before `Little Queen` where they changed key from C up to D for EC`s final solo. I had commented with fans after Sunday`s show that they needed a 95 Have you ever loved a woman style key change as the song seemed to be milked with lengthy solos from Chris Stainton, Doyle, Derek and EC. By the time EC came to the final solo on the opening two nights the audience were losing interest. With the change up to D `Little queen` blows the audience sideways.
That old classic `Tell the truth` was next up what a fabulous addition to the setlist this is. For me one of the set highlights. PLLLLLLEASE don`t drop it Eric!!!!!!! Predictable tonight, I mean, Wonderful tonight played in the same `going through the motions` mood that we are all so tired of. It`s got beyond a joke now. But as usual the crowd applauded the opening notes in such a welcoming manner.
Layla has been really good in Osaka, okay it`s nearly as predictable in an ec set as WT but this is still THE guitar song. Straight into Cocaine where Clapton delivered some of the best lead guitar of the night, Chris Stainton was really impressive on this JJ Cale standard. EC then waved goodbye and disappeared for a minute or two.
Encore was of course Crossroads and as per the norm for the 2006 tour produced some good solos. Final wave goodbye from the band, lights up and time to go.
All four shows here at Osaka JOH Hall have been great, but I still maintain that the opener was the best. The whole band are in great form and ALL look happy
I’ll Never Get Over It (E&C World Star EC-0041 – 2 CD)
The Road To Osaka (ARMS 94-101 – 8 CD)
In The West – Film (Mid Valley Film 004/005 – 2 DVD)