As of last night, I can die happy. The last major musical act on my list of lifetime concert goals has been scratched off: I saw Eric Clapton in concert.
Being a guitar player, especially one who likes the blues, it’s nearly impossible not to like Clapton. Sure, he gets negative press from purists because he uses too many effects, or because he’s too “pop,” but I think that even his naysayers have to acknowledge that he’s been a musical presence and influence on rock ‘n roll for nearly forty years.
Yes, forty years. For longer than I’ve been alive, this man has been a driving force in music. I’ve been playing guitar as a hobbyist for over 20 years now, and EC has always been an influence on me.
In my opinion, one of the areas for which Clapton doesn’t get enough credit is his vocals. The man has a very wide stylistic range, and can jump from growling the Delta Blues to singing bouncing reggae to twanging country songs with no apparent shift in mindset. His shift in voice is just another performance technique that he has honed over the years, like his guitar stylings.
Thanks, EC, for playing Denver this time around, and for bring such fine musicians as Billy Preston and Doyle Bramhall II along for the ride.