Friday, December 10, 2010
A little late in coming all the same, but I finally had a chance to read 2007's autobiography by Eric Clapton, simply titled "Clapton". This book is a brilliantly written testimonial about one man's struggle to maintain conviction and integrity to play the kind of music that he truly believes. You can almost hear Clapton's voice telling the reader the story of his life and the struggle against the demons that haunted him....The book transitions in sections from "The early years" through each musical segment along the way. In addition, as each segment progressed, I took it upon myself to listen to the music of that particular segment. For example, when he spoke of Derek and the Dominos, I listened to "Layla and other Love Songs" As a result there was an entirely new dimension to the story. Clapton is a very humble storyteller in that he completely acknowledges all of his influences, and speaks in complete reverence of all who have helped him along the way. Clapton speaks fondly of his relationship with George Harrison and how it evolved from acquaintance to collaborator, his admiration of Jimi Hendrix as a pure performer that lived and breathed his craft. The early years saw the courage of non compromise keeping the spirit of the music vs "selling out" in the name of hit records. That thread seems to follow through the entire book...Most importantly there is testimonial to beating the demons of addiction and helping others to realise their potential. An amazing read even without stopping to listen to the music, enjoy the ride!