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Rock - Released July 1, 1974 | Polydor Records

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461 Ocean Boulevard is Eric Clapton's second studio solo album, arriving after his side project of Derek and the Dominos and a long struggle with heroin addiction. Although there are some new reggae influences, the album doesn't sound all that different from the rock, pop, blues, country, and R&B amalgam of Eric Clapton. However, 461 Ocean Boulevard is a tighter, more focused outing that enables Clapton to stretch out instrumentally. Furthermore, the pop concessions on the album -- the sleek production, the concise running times -- don't detract from the rootsy origins of the material, whether it's Johnny Otis' "Willie and the Hand Jive," the traditional blues "Motherless Children," Bob Marley's "I Shot the Sheriff," or Clapton's emotional original "Let It Grow." With its relaxed, friendly atmosphere and strong bluesy roots, 461 Ocean Boulevard set the template for Clapton's '70s albums. Though he tried hard to make an album exactly like it, he never quite managed to replicate its charms. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Blues - Released June 13, 2000 | Reprise

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Rock - Released October 12, 1999 | Reprise

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Rock - Released March 25, 2013 | Polydor Records

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Switching from a major to his own Bushbranch imprint on Gary Hoey's independent SurfDog label is, to the say least, a little unexpected from Eric Clapton, but now that he's reached the ripe old age of 67, the guitarist isn't so concerned with proving himself. On Old Sock, his 20th studio album, he sounds downright happy to be slowly dropping off of the mainstream radar, not bothering with any music that could conceivably be called pop, or even writing his own songs. Only two of the 12 songs on Old Sock are new, and he didn't write either himself; they're co-writes between his longtime right-hand man Doyle Bramhall II, Nikki Costa, and Justin Stanley, and the vaguely propulsive blues-rock of "Gotta Get Over" and cheerful lite reggae bounce "Every Little Thing" fit neatly into the sunny nostalgia offered on the rest of the record. And "sunny" describes Clapton's sound, mood, and styles here, as he favors reggae over the blues, turning both Otis Redding's "Your One and Only Man" and Taj Mahal's "Further On Down the Road" into lilting bits of sunsplash, covering Peter Tosh's "Till Your Well Runs Dry," and getting so besotted with good cheer on "Every Little Thing" he brings in a bunch of kids to sing the closing chorus, a jarring addition that treads the border of good taste. When Clapton does dip into the blues, it's on a grandiose "Still Got the Blues," a tribute to the late (and somewhat underappreciated) British blues guitarist Gary Moore, so it's clear his heart now lies elsewhere, namely shuffling along with Paul McCartney to "All of Me" and knocking out Leadbelly's "Goodnight Irene" as a front porch singalong. Clapton indulged in this shameless, warm-hearted celebration of the past on 2010's Eric Clapton, but that album bore all the hallmarks of a carefully considered major-label effort: the sound was immaculate and the song selection had the well-considered thrust of a history lesson. Here, he leaves all those classy trappings behind, picks up his guitar and plays a bunch of songs he likes, maybe even loves. It's not an especially compelling reason to make an album but it's not a bad one, either, and the same can be said about the experience of listening to Old Sock: it's a pleasurable way to while away the time. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released August 29, 2005 | Reprise

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Rock - Released November 1, 1983 | Reprise

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Rock - Released January 1, 2013 | Polydor Records

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Rock - Released July 1, 1974 | Polydor Records

Distinctions The Qobuz Ideal Discography
461 Ocean Boulevard is Eric Clapton's second studio solo album, arriving after his side project of Derek and the Dominos and a long struggle with heroin addiction. Although there are some new reggae influences, the album doesn't sound all that different from the rock, pop, blues, country, and R&B amalgam of Eric Clapton. However, 461 Ocean Boulevard is a tighter, more focused outing that enables Clapton to stretch out instrumentally. Furthermore, the pop concessions on the album -- the sleek production, the concise running times -- don't detract from the rootsy origins of the material, whether it's Johnny Otis' "Willie and the Hand Jive," the traditional blues "Motherless Children," Bob Marley's "I Shot the Sheriff," or Clapton's emotional original "Let It Grow." With its relaxed, friendly atmosphere and strong bluesy roots, 461 Ocean Boulevard set the template for Clapton's '70s albums. Though he tried hard to make an album exactly like it, he never quite managed to replicate its charms. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released November 1, 1977 | Polydor Records

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Rock - Released October 11, 2013 | Rhino - Warner Records

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Rock - Released October 11, 2013 | Rhino - Warner Records

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Rock - Released June 26, 2020 | Reprise

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The potential for a collaboration between B.B. King and Eric Clapton is enormous, of course, and the real questions concern how it is organized and executed. This first recorded pairing between the 74-year-old King and the 55-year-old Clapton was put together in the most obvious way: Clapton arranged the session using many of his regular musicians, picked the songs, and co-produced with his partner Simon Climie. That ought to mean that King would be a virtual guest star rather than earning a co-billing, but because of Clapton's respect for his elder, it nearly works the other way around. The set list includes lots of King specialties -- "Ten Long Years," "Three O'Clock Blues," "Days of Old," "When My Heart Beats Like a Hammer" -- as well as standards like "Hold on I'm Coming" and "Come Rain or Come Shine," with some specially written and appropriate recent material thrown in, so King has reason to be comfortable without being complacent. The real danger is that Clapton will defer too much; though he can be inspired by a competing guitarist such as Duane Allman, he has sometimes tended to lean too heavily on accompanists such as Albert Lee and Mark Knopfler when working with them in concert. That danger is partially realized; as its title indicates, Riding With the King is more about King than it is about Clapton. But the two players turn out to have sufficiently complementary, if distinct, styles so that Clapton's supportive role fills out and surrounds King's stinging single-string playing. (It's also worth noting that there are usually another two or three guitarists on each track.) The result is an effective, if never really stunning, work. © William Ruhlmann /TiVo
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Rock - Released July 28, 2014 | Polydor Records

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In a sense, nearly every album Eric Clapton recorded after 1970 has been a tribute to J.J. Cale. On that first solo album, Clapton cut a cover of Cale's "After Midnight" and while he was under the spell of Delaney Bramlett for that album, soon enough Slowhand began drifting toward the laconic shuffle that was Cale's stock in trade. Clapton never hesitated to credit Cale, dropping his name in interviews, turning "Cocaine" into a modern standard, even going so far as to record an entire duet album with the Oklahoma troubadour called The Road to Escondido in 2006. In other words, E.C. owed J.J. little but after Cale passed at the age of 74, the guitarist decided to pay a full-scale tribute in the form of the 2014 LP The Breeze: An Appreciation of J.J. Cale. Working with most of his regular band, Clapton also invited a host of friends who share a soft spot for Cale, including Tom Petty, Mark Knopfler, John Mayer, Willie Nelson, and the Oklahoma-based singer Don White, whose vocals are within the range of the departed Cale. All of these musicians don't distract from E.C.'s version of J.J.: everybody slides into a laid-back, pristine roots groove -- only "I'll Be There (If You Ever Want Me)" boogies, but "Cajun Moon" skips along, too -- and one that's executed with the precision of old pros. Occasionally, a personal stylistic quirk stamps a track with a signature -- there's no mistaking Willie's idiosyncratic phrasing or Knopfler's Strat -- but otherwise, everybody is operating at the same relaxed pace, differences between the musicians disappearing alongside the distinctions between songs. It's all perfectly pleasant and a convincing testament to what Clapton learned from Cale. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released April 1, 1980 | Polydor Records

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Although Eric Clapton has released a bevy of live albums, none of them have ever quite captured the guitarist's raw energy and dazzling virtuosity. The double live album Just One Night may have gotten closer to that elusive goal than most of its predecessors, but it is still lacking in many ways. The most notable difference between Just One Night and Clapton's other live albums is his backing band. Led by guitarist Albert Lee, the group is a collective of accomplished professionals who have managed to keep some grit in their playing. They help push Clapton along, forcing him to spit out crackling solos throughout the album. However, the performances aren't consistent on Just One Night -- there are plenty of dynamic moments like "Double Trouble" and "Rambling on My Mind," but they are weighed down by pedestrian renditions of songs like "All Our Past Times." Nevertheless, more than any other Clapton live album, Just One Night suggests the guitarist's in-concert potential. It's just too bad that the recording didn't occur on a night when he did fulfill all of that potential. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released May 20, 2016 | Polydor Records

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Sharp as ever on the guitar, fingers full of feeling and emotion... Like a fine wine, the 71-year-old legend continues to evolve, adding tasty notes and nuances to an already well-stocked palette. To assume his entry into the prime of his life, the English prodigy has concocted a return to the source. Firstly, he decided to work with producer Glyn Johns. In the golden age of British rock music, he produced The Who as well as the the mythical album Sticky Fingers by The Rolling Stones. He was also sound engineer for the no less famous LP Led Zeppelin I. ‘God’ then brought together a number of musicians with whom he is familiar: Henry Spinetti, Dave Bronze, Paul Carrack and Andy Faiweather Low... An interesting anecdote to emphasize the nostalgia that envelops this album’s content, it is the artist Sir Peter Blake who sketched Clapton’s portrait for this album was also the artist behind the innovative cover of the famous Sgt. Pepper's Lonely Hearts Club Band.Successfully mixed, well-dosed as always and smooth in its’ composition, I Still Do offers a pleasant listen from start to finish and will see fans carried away with each note played on ‘Blacky’, Clapton’s Stratocaster. We very quickly understand Clapton’s urge to splurge on the musical style he holds dear: the Blues. Alabama Woman Blues, originally written by Leroy Caar, is a hymn to the genre: tempo slowed, swaying piano, harmonica, slide guitar and saturation, melancholy... The first track transports us into a wistful Chicago, at a time when whiskey was still prohibited... Muddy Waters would have been proud. We find this atmosphere in Cypress Grove (Skip James cover), and to a lesser extent, British Spiral or Stones In My Passway. Just back in a new decade, Eric Clapton offers a quality album, and even mark a little music footprint. © AR/Qobuz
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Rock - Released September 30, 2016 | Reprise

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God has never hidden his admiration for J.J. Cale, and this is why Eric Clapton decided to invite his idol on stage during his 2007 world tour. They played five of sixteen songs together, including (of course) Cocaine and Clapton’s own cover of After Midnight. This was after the two artists had worked together on the album The Road To Escondido (2006). The concert took place at the Valley Center in the San Diego area. And the local star wasn’t the only one to give his fingers a workout, as Derek Trucks from The Allman Brothers Band and Robert Cray also support Slow Hand on some of the tracks. Clapton himself declared that his ultimate ambition was to share the stage with the Californian guitarist. So when the latter passed away in 2013, the British virtuoso wanted to pay him one last tribute at Live in San Diego. © AR/Qobuz
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Rock - Released May 15, 2009 | Reprise

Eric Clapton's new millennium has largely been defined by collaborations with friends, beginning with a duet album with B.B. King following through with a Cream reunion and closing with tours with his former Blind Faith running mate, Steve Winwood. Clapton and Winwood did three concerts together at Madison Square Garden in February 2008 and the results were fruitful enough to spawn this double-disc album -- along with its accompanying DVD set -- and a moderately scaled 2009 tour. Live from Madison Square Garden culls 21 highlights from those three nights and spreads them over two discs, sequencing the songs so Traffic numbers alternate with selections from Blind Faith, Derek & the Dominos, blues standards, a handful of Clapton's hits, and a heavy dose of Hendrix, who has no less than three songs here. That extended salute to Jimi is a good indication of the vibe here -- this is a genuine shared co-billing with Clapton and Winwood trading vocals and solos almost equally. There's not much ego here and not much hunger, either, with the two stars sliding into a relaxed groove that yields plenty of rewards. There's a comfortable touch to their playing that's greatly appealing, and the straightforward setting places the spotlight directly on their interplay. Clapton and Winwood might roll easy but they can still create some sparks, sometimes in unexpected places, such as the somewhat forgotten '80s hits "Forever Man" and "Split Decision," both which are highlights here. Ultimately, this isn't an album of moments, but rather a sustained whole that finds Clapton and Winwood egging each other on to produce a wholly satisfying, if not quite surprising, reunion. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released August 1, 1970 | Polydor Records

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Right after he finished a tour with the Delaney & Bonnie couple, Clapton ended the collaboration because of a fight with them. Nevertheless, his creativity had not left him so he decided to go through a solo adventure and made a perfect start as a leader. Eric Clapton was released in 1970 after recording sessions in Los Angeles and London. Pop oriented, this album is still influenced by gospel and r’n’b which produces a diverse musical experience. Brownie, Clapton’s first Stratocaster is the main guitar used on the record, even though the guitarist is able to take care of some other on acoustic track (Easy Now). The legend is on its way. © AR/Qobuz
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Rock - Released November 1, 1977 | Polydor Records

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Rock - Released January 1, 1996 | Polydor Records

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Eric Clapton in the magazine