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Rock - Released January 1, 1974 | Polydor Records

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R&B - Released June 13, 2000 | Reprise

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Rock - Released October 12, 1999 | Reprise

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Clapton Chronicles ignores Eric Clapton's 1983 Reprise debut, Money and Cigarettes (which sounded more like an RSO album, anyway), starting with the pair of Phil Collins-produced mid-'80s albums, Behind the Sun and August. Though these had a pop sheen, they were album rock holdovers. Clapton didn't get the balance between hard rock and commercial gloss right until 1989's Journeyman, whose featured songs -- "Before You Accuse Me," "Bad Love," and "Pretending" -- form the heart of this compilation. Journeyman was overshadowed by the phenomenal success of "Tears in Heaven" and 1992's Unplugged. Not only did Unplugged go platinum ten times, it established a new public image -- classy, stylish, and substantial. That's the image that prevails on Clapton Chronicles. His triple-platinum blues album From the Cradle is written out of the picture, with songs from movie soundtracks taking its place. Apart from the Babyface-produced "Change the World," these tunes are a little too self-conscious and subdued, as are selections from 1998's Pilgrim. However, this deliberate move to paint Clapton's '80s and '90s recordings as adult contemporary fare is accurate. Clapton's musical journey from 1985 to 1999 was taken mostly in the middle of the road, and Clapton Chronicles certainly captures that journey, missing no major hits from the late '80s and '90s. Whether it's a necessary addition to a Clapton collection is a matter of taste. It's certainly an excellent compliment to Unplugged and Time Pieces, his two most popular and pop-oriented albums, but that might not be what every fan wants. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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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 April 8, 2013 | Polydor Records

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Rock - Released November 1, 1983 | Reprise

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

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Blues - 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 January 1, 1977 | Polydor Records

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

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Rock - Released January 1, 2014 | Polydor Records

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Rock - Released January 1, 1980 | Polydor Records

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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 October 12, 2018 | Polydor Records

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If we were to travel back in time and tell young 19-year-old Eric, who had just left The Yardbirds because he felt their For Your Love sounded too pop, that he would one day record a Christmas album, he wouldn’t believe us for a second and would threaten to knock us out with his guitar! It’s a fact; 73-year-old Clapton is a changed man. Not only has he overcome many hardships, but he also appears serene and relaxed, at last enjoying family life with real holiday celebrations by the fireplace. He therefore has every right to offer his own version of such classics as White Christmas, Silent Night or Away In A Manger (Once In Royal David’s City), and less mainstream titles like Sentimental Moments (1955 by Joan Bennett), Lonesome Christmas (by Lowell Fulson and later covered by B.B. King and Joe Bonamassa) or Have Yourself A Merry Little Christmas that was interpreted by Judy Garland and Frank Sinatra, and was also featured on the Jackson 5’s Christmas album (when little Michael was twelve). Even Chrissie Hynde sang it with The Pretenders, that’s saying a lot…Eric Clapton even composed his own Christmas song, For Love On Christmas Day. It blends in perfectly with the “Christmas tree and wreath” decor and is fully “Claptonised” with a high dose of top-notch blues. The sole, highly surprising exception is the EDM-style Jingle Bells dedicated to DJ Avicii, whose passing particularly affected Eric as he drew parallels to his own self-destructive youth. And surprise, Clapton himself drew the joyful Santa on the album cover (a self-portrait?). Now you have something to put in a few stockings for Christmas… © Jean-Pierre Sabouret/Qobuz
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Rock - Released April 28, 2015 | Reprise

As the first compilation covering Eric Clapton's Reprise/Warner work since 2007's Complete Clapton, 2015's Forever Man is the third collection to focus specifically on these recordings from the '80s, '90s, and 2000s, and it's by far the most extensive, weighing in at two CDs in its basic edition and three in its deluxe. The difference between the two is the addition of a disc of "Blues," a nice addition to the "Studio" and "Live" discs of the collection. These themes make sense on paper but they're a little odd in practice, with the Studio selections hopscotching between eras and the live heavy on new millennial selections. Often, the length highlights how light Forever Man is on hits: "Tears in Heaven," "I've Got a Rock N Roll Heart," "Forever Man," "Change the World," "My Father's Eyes," "Pretending," "Bad Love," "It's in the Way That You Use It," and the unplugged "Layla" are all here, but the sequencing suggests how the '70s hits are missing (or present in new live versions). It is hardly a botched collection -- in pure consumer terms, this delivers a lot of bang for the buck -- but it winds up asking more questions than it answers. © Stephen Thomas Erlewine /TiVo
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Rock - Released January 1, 1996 | Polydor Records

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Rock - Released January 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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Eric Clapton in the magazine
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