Bluesbreakers with Eric Clapton [Remastered]

Bluesbreakers with Eric Clapton [Remastered]

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by John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers
     
 

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It's easy to forget that long before his success as a poignant acoustic pop balladeer, and years before he wrote "Layla" or formed the ultimate power trio, Cream, Eric Clapton began his career as a god of electric blues guitar. Bluesbreakers, released in 1966, is the best early example of Clapton's prowess. Buoyed by John Mayall,See more details below

Overview

It's easy to forget that long before his success as a poignant acoustic pop balladeer, and years before he wrote "Layla" or formed the ultimate power trio, Cream, Eric Clapton began his career as a god of electric blues guitar. Bluesbreakers, released in 1966, is the best early example of Clapton's prowess. Buoyed by John Mayall, who handles most of the vocals, as well as piano, organ and harmonica, Clapton rips through Otis Rush's "All Your Love," James Bracken's "Steppin' Out," and Freddie King's "Hide away" (throwing in some Elmore James for good measure). Also included is Clapton's first recorded vocal, a subdued, reverent take on Robert Johnson's "Ramblin' on My Mind." And that's John McVie on bass, still a couple of years away from forming Fleetwood Mac. The recording shows its age in places -- quoting the Beatles' "Daytripper" in the middle of a Ray Charles tune is a pretty dated move -- but the sheer command and presence of the youthful Clapton certainly stand the test of time. This album lives up to its name -- it really did help break the electric blues scene in America.

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Editorial Reviews

All Music Guide - Lindsay Planer
Rarely has any single record album induced such a shift in popular music. Bluesbreakers with Eric Clapton not only catapulted Clapton to the helm of the burgeoning British blues-rock scene, it likewise made significant noise on the other side of the Atlantic -- where the blues had literally been born, bred, and buttered. This remastered and revisited edition boasts significantly upgraded sound quality for not only the dozen sides that comprise the original program, but also the bonus tracks. These two additional performances include the A- and B-sides of a rare 45 that Mayall and Clapton cut for producer Mike Vernon's Purdah label nearly a year before recording this disc. Taking a page from the mid-'50s Miles Davis Quintet, it became obvious for those involved that the best way to approach making a studio recording was to document the same material that was concurrently being performed by the band night after night in various London area clubs. In addition to Mayall (guitar/vocals) and Clapton (guitar/vocals), this incarnation of the Bluesbreakers utilizes the talents of John McVie (bass) and Hughie Flint (drums). As a combo, this band was able to reinvent the American blues for a fresh audience whose ultimate response would give rise to subgenres such as heavy metal and other roots-related rock. While their contributions prove immeasurable, they are likewise sadly eclipsed by that of Clapton. In retrospect -- unlike many of the other revolutionary changes occurring in pop music circa the mid-'60s -- the Bluesbreakers are infinitely more subtle in their attack. Their most obvious weapon is the advantage of documenting in-the-studio material from their live performance set. The Bluesbreakers were able to incorporate originals such as "Double Crossing Time" and "Key to Love" with revered blues standards, including Freddie King's "Hideaway" and Robert Johnson's "Ramblin' on My Mind" -- which features Clapton's very first lead vocal. Clapton needed precious little time to gestate the blues. His ability to express himself is uncanny, as if he were a man twice -- if not three times -- his age. The passionate inflections and unforgettable impressions Clapton makes upon these grooves swiftly catapulted him into both international exposure as well as legendary guitar rock idol status. Bluesbreakers with Eric Clapton is an invaluable touchstone into primordial pre-metal rock & roll.

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Product Details

Release Date:
06/05/2001
Label:
Polydor / Umgd
UPC:
0042288296720
catalogNumber:
882967
Rank:
2855

Tracks

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Album Credits

Performance Credits

John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers   Primary Artist
John Mayall   Indexed Contributor,Organ,Harmonica,Piano,Vocals
Alan Skidmore   Tenor Saxophone
John Almond   Baritone Saxophone
John McVie   Bass
Eric Clapton   Guitar,Vocals
Hughie Flint   Drums
Dennis Healey   Trumpet

Technical Credits

Willie Dixon   Composer
Freddie King   Composer
Little Walter   Composer
John Mayall   Arranger,Composer
Mike Vernon   Producer
Sonny Thompson   Composer
Gus Dudgeon   Engineer
Robert Johnson   Composer
Otis Rush   Composer
James C. Bracken   Composer
Traditional   Composer
David Goldfarb   Reissue Production Coordination
L.C. Frazier   Composer
Jacobs   Composer

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