Review by Norrie & Grace F. / Ardrossan, Ayrshire
Back in the Royal Albert Hall again, could it be the last time to see Eric Clapton at this wonderful venue. He says it’s time to call it a day at 70 years old. Can’t blame him but he is still so so good!
Stepping onto the RAH stage for his 200th appearance he said “this one’s for BB” who died the night before, a poignant moment for everyone there. I wondered if this would have some impact on him, but he played on with great skill and enthusiasm, ably supported by the brilliant musicians around him, that BB King would have been proud of him and the gang.
Band members were Chris Stainton, Paul Carrick, Steve Gadd and nice to see Nathan East again on bass along with Sharon White and Michelle John on backing vocals. Andy Fairweather Low joined the band for the encore, on which Eric broke a string but continued regardless.
The set list was the same as the opening night with a couple of changes to the order. I was very pleased with these song choices especially Pretending, I Shot the Sheriff, Little Queen of Spades, Let it Rain and Crossroads being the big crowd pleasers. Prior to the acoustic set, the crowd sang Happy Birthday to him…a nice touch he embarrassingly accepted.
We thoroughly enjoyed this historical occasion. Don’t know whether my wife and I will see him again if he really is quitting touring, but you never know, maybe he’d like to visit Scotland again sometime. If not, at least we’ve seen him many times and have enjoyed great memories of all the gigs especially the ones at the Albert Hall. It’s been a pleasure, Eric, Enjoy your retirement with the family!
Review by Laura and Alessandro Vailati / Italy
Great Great Great! Eric was on fire. “When something‘s going wrong, I succeed in doing my best,” this is what EC said in the Eighties. The sad news about B.B. King break him down but he played with his heart.
Somebody Knockin’,Pretending, Sheriff were very good with wonderful solos. After a fiery but predictable acoustic set, Let It Rain and Cocaine made the difference! During the encore, Eric broke a string.
A very strong performance, with a talkative Clapton. If only It would be possible to change the setlist a little bit. Anyway You Are So Beautiful and Can't Find My Way Home were nice additions. The band, marvelous as usual. Eric please keep on, keep on!!!!
Review by Joy Coombs (via WE! Facebook)
I was lucky enough to be in the Albert hall last night, The whole evening was amazing, with some brilliant solos from Eric, Chris, Paul and Nathan. A fitting tribute to such an inspirational musician. Must also mention Andy and the low riders who kicked the evening off superbly. BB's legend will live on.
Review by Barbara Mitchelmore
I counted up the other day and 14th and 15th of May have brought my total to 91 times that I've seen Eric Clapton in concert - I probably could have bought a small car with what I've spent on tickets but that wouldn't have given me anything like as much enjoyment!
Friends ask 'why do you go to so many shows' but those of you who have had the privilege to to see Eric live a few times will know that, even if the set list is the same, Eric's performance isn't. He always plays from the heart but sometimes his heart just seems bigger.
I wasn't sure what to expect on Thursday night, he's 70 after all, and would the skill and passion still be evident in a man of that age? The programme notes didn't encourage me - Eric wrote 'please bear with me if it looks like I'm struggling up there at times'.
I needn't have worried, OK he fluffed his words a couple of times, but Thursday's performance was great from the 1st to last note and his solos were outstanding. He also spoke more than he does on most occasions - after the audience sang happy birthday commenting that he wasn't the oldest one there and who else was wearing a heat pad! I left the auditorium on a high and woke to the news that BB King had died - a true gentleman, a great performer and a genuine loss to those of us who enjoy the blues.
Having seen Eric's moving tribute to BB on his Facebook page, as I approached the Hall on Friday night, I wondered whether he would play something from 'Riding with the King' or one of BB's numbers but that wasn't to be.
The audience gave Eric, and the band, a standing ovation as they walked on to the stage and Eric started the show by dedicating it to BB.
I felt the 1st two or three songs weren't as good as the previous night but from then on it got better and better and, if BB was watching, I'm sure he would have been smiling - Eric's solos seemed more extended than the previous night and the other band members stepped up to the plate with Chris, in particular, showing extended virtuosity on the keyboards.
A large portion of the audience seemed to actually know a lot of the songs that Eric performed recognising the intros, in a way that isn't always apparent, and our response clearly pleased Eric because we got 4 bows after the encore and I've only every seen him give a maximum of 3 before!
All in all another two amazing nights in the company of Mr Clapton. I can't wait for Saturday and my next visit to the Albert Hall, I'm just hoping, with all the comments about retiring, that it won't be my last.
Review by Frank Michelsen
I went with my family on a pilgrimage to the Royal Albert Hall concert on May 15th, his 200th concert in the “temple”. As a lifelong fan of Clapton, our trip to London was fantastic and the concert unforgettable. We had great view from our seats (stalls H, row 4) and we enjoyed every minute, both visual and sounds. It is difficult to choose one song beyond another when all are great but most likely was "I SHOT THE SHERIFF" the most surprising song, the most powerful was "Cocaine" but we were really pleased to hear "Wonderful Tonight" which is the most favorite song for me and my wife and always brings back good memories. We were especially pleased that Eric played alone on the guitar and we could not see or hear that on the stage was standing 70-year-old guitar hero. My hero.