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25 May 2009 - Eric Clapton & His Band

Location

Royal Albert Hall London
United Kingdom
Band Lineup: 

Eric Clapton – guitar / vocals
Andy Fairweather Low – guitar / vocals
Chris Stainton– keyboards
Tim Carmon – keyboards
Willie Weeks – bass
Steve Gadd – drums
Michelle John – backing vocals
Sharon White – backing vocals

Support: 
The Arc Angels
Special Guest(s): 

 

Set List: 

01. Going Down Slow
02. Key To The Highway
03. Old Love
04. Anything For Your Love
05. I Shot The Sheriff
06. Driftin'
07. Layla - acoustic
08. Nobody Knows You (When You’re Down And Out)
09. Anytime For You
10. Somewhere Over The Rainbow
11. Badge
12. Little Queen of Spades
13. Before You Accuse Me
14. Wonderful Tonight
15. Cocaine
16. Crossroads (encore)

Show Notes: 

 

Fan Reviews: 

Review by Nadja T / Bonau, Switzerland
With one change in the set list (Driftin' instead of Not Dark Yet), the 7th night at the RAH was rather short at under 2 hours. If it weren't for the extended versions of Old Love, LQoS, I Shot the Sheriff, Before You Accuse Me and Cocaine, it would be a 90-minute show. While Old Love, LQoS, I Shot the Sheriff and particularly Cocaine have fantastic solos it them (esp in Cocaine tonight, EC's first solo was very different to other nights) and EC being at the top of his game, the show today held nothing special.

I don't understand a musician such as EC who keeps playing the same staple songs all the time for years on end. Old Love, LQoS, are only good because EC does most of the work. Crossroads is nothing spectacular anymore (how I wish for the 1994 version to make an appearance) and Wonderful Tonight could not be any shorter. If Hoochie Coochie man is dropped why not replace it with Manish Boy. 16 songs incl. just one single encore in under 2 hours makes me feel almost cheated. For the money we pay I would wish for a longer show.
Luckily, we do get spectacular gigs such as Zurich 2008, last year’s team-up with Steve Winwood that I will treasure forever, The Allman Bros this past March 2009 and the show of May 22, 2009. If those gems were not there and the slim chance that EC may play Double Trouble, Gin House, Little Wing, Blues Power, Anyday, etc. etc. etc. than I would have given up a long time ago.

Review by Geoff
Fantastic night at the Albert Hall. Eric was on fire. The set was well crafted and it was a nice surprise for Drifting to be included in Eric's sit down part of the show. Cocaine was amazing with a new arrangement and blistering solos by all band members. I last saw Eric play in 2005 and i was a bit disappointed. Tonight he played like it was 1985. I was so inspired tonight that i am going to go into tin pan alley and buy myself a new Fender strat and a fender amplifier. Anyone who lost faith in Eric, get it back and go and see him. A genius and a legend

Review by Austin Sayer / Weston-Super-Mare
Eric`s May 25th 2009 concert was the first concert I have seen live with Eric and his band, although I had witnessed Eric in both 1968 and 2005 with Cream who gave me the inspiration in the 60`s to learn and play drums in a rock band.

I have to say apart from when Eric opened up on his blistering solos I am afraid like my son who was there with me I have to agree that it just fell flat.

I felt the band were just going through the motions lacking any passion on there solos. I also have to say that halfway through the set I did sense that Eric was somewhat annoyed with either a roadie or a musician, I could not make out who. As a drummer I felt in my opinion Steve Gadd would never have inspired me as would the likes of Ginger Baker or Buddy Rich. Eric needs a drummer like a young Ginger Baker to inspire, unfortunately there ain`t no drummer around like that these days. I was always of the understanding that playing the blues, much like Jazz was an inspired feeling from within you. Sorry I did not see or hear much of that on May 25th.

I realise Eric will have sold out these concerts, but I have to be critical of the playlist and even with the way the band laid down Eric`s recognise hits. I just cannot understand why Eric continues to play Badge when it is so clearly is so far removed from the original recording laid down by Cream, especially the way he sings the song now, somewhat half-hearted. Being a strong Cream fan of old that does annoy me. For me it is absolutely nothing like the original and Eric must know it.

As for Layla, well I have to say I love it as it was first laid down with Derek and the Dominoes but not that horrible acoustic version which does sound boring. Whether it was just the heat of the evening in the hall I don`t know, but for me I have to say I felt somewhat let down by Eric`s band`s performance on the night. Sorry Eric, I just tell it like it is.

As for the Texas band Arc Angels whom I have never heard before, I thought they were brilliant. Full marks to them.

Review by Fred Frome
Unfortunately I can not compare my own (single) expeience with Nadja´s multiple ones, but luckily I can´t agree with her but with Geoff instead.
A superb show with blistering new intros and solos by EC, as well as timely solos (amount / duration-wise order) by Tim Carmon (one might not agree but it´s EC´s choice!), Chris Stainton and Andy (superb on Cocaine). Extraordinary both EC´s and Tim´s (very jazzy and highly supported by EC and Andy) soloing on Old Love, both solos nearly five minutes each!

Conclusion: highly worked out new version of a load of well known songs. I was afraid by all the critical reviews I had read before, but I really am lucky that we were there, me and my wife. BTW she on her own realized what somebody had mentioned before - nearly no coloured people in the audience!

Official Recording: 

 

Bootleg Recording(s):