Venue: Rexall Place
Eric Clapton – guitar / vocals
Doyle Bramhall II – guitar / vocals
Chris Stainton – keyboards
Tim Carmon – keyboards
Willie Weeks – bass
Steve Jordan – drums
Michelle John – backing vocals
Sharon White – backing vocals
Robert Cray Band
Robert Cray – guitar / vocals*
01. Tell The Truth
02. Key To The Highway
03. Got To Get Better In A Little While
04. Little Wing
05. Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad??
07. Outside Woman Blues
08. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out
09. Running On Faith
10. Motherless Children
11. Little Queen Of Spades
12. Further On Up The Road
13. Wonderful Tonight
15. Cocaine (encore)
16. Crossroads (encore)*
Review by Rares Bistran
First of all, where do I even start? At 20 years of age, this was my first ever concert experience, and it sure was a good (ahem, mind-blowing) one. This was also the first big concert experience for my dad.
The Robert Cray band opened at 7:30 and they played for about half an hour. I was really impressed by his solos; the man plays with all his heart. I have never listened to Robert Cray except on the Crossroads DVD, but after last night, I think I will check out his music in more detail.
At 8:30 sharp Eric and his band walked on stage and the Edmonton crowd went nuts. From what I’ve heard, last time Eric played here was in 1998. The show opened with Tell the Truth, which sounded amazing live. Actually, all songs were so great it felt surreal. Little Wing was incredible, and just before this song, we heard from Eric: "Oh, good evening! Sorry, I forgot." It was quite funny, but there was no apology needed. The music itself was more than enough to keep everyone cheering and applauding.
Great sit-down set, with the first song allowing Eric to play by himself in front of the whole audience. That was one of the great moments of the evening. Actually, every second of the whole concert was extraordinary, and by the end of the show, it felt as if everything lasted for a few minutes.
Chris Stainton and Tim Carmon pleased the crowd with their solos. At one point, Tim Carmon put his hands up in the air and sort of waved at the crowd, while the keyboard keys were still pressed; that was really cool.
The sound crew did a phenomenal job, as everything sounded crisp and clear on the floor, and I’m sure everwhere in Rexall Place. Same goes for the light show; simply professional.
I must comment on Doyle Bramhall II, because I’ve been following him for the last 3 years (since I watched the Roger Waters "In the flesh" DVD) and he was one of the main reasons why I attended that concert. Again, where do I start? Doyle is the greatest !!! From the moment he walked on stage, I couldn’t believe I was looking at the real Doyle Bramhall II. His solos were absolutely amazing. I was very impressed by how comfortable he is playing with Eric and all the other legends on stage. I’ve never seen or heard anyone like him, and I knew what to expect from him. His solos were simply impressive, and he makes everything look so easy, that you have no doubt why Eric would take him under his wing on several world tours by now. Doyle is a legend himself, and every time he plays he sounds just like Doyle Bramhall II and like nobody else. Nobody can sound like him. No matter if there’s a spotlight on Doyle or not, you know when he’s playing; his sound is unique. As he has said, his sound comes from his heart and hands; that’s what makes a true music legend. Whether it’s blues, rock and roll, or any type of music, Doyle’s guitar tone (and his incredible voice as well) stand out as something unique. It is frustrating that so few people actually know about him, because I truly believe that he is the best guitar player ever, second only to Eric Clapton. Yes, Dylan is great, Mark Knopfler is great, JJ Cale is great…I could go on an on, but I honestly think Doyle is much better; his playing technique (if you can call it technique, because he follows his heart when playing) is what makes him stand out from all guitar players.
For any of you Doyle fans, let’s keep on supporting one of the greatest artists ever alive. If you are not a Doyle fan yet, google his name and you’ll find out lots about him. Definetely check out the "Before the music dies" DVD; that is sure to turn anyone to his music.
As for Eric, contrary to many people’s beliefs that he doesn’t play as well as he used to when he was younger, he put on probably the best concert that I will ever attend (unless I see Eric again). I can’t even find the right words to describe him. For the two full hours, he played effortlessly and with full energy up to last second of the show. It’s beyond my understanding how someone at the age of 61 can play like that. You could see him tilt his head back, close his eyes, and run his fingers up and down the fretboard without looking at it, while instantly creating great solos. No wonder they call him God. Who else would be able to pull off something like that. In this day and age, I don’t think there will ever be anyone as great as Eric Clapton.
I just hope that I will get to see him ( and Doyle) on another great (hopefully better, but I don’t know if it can get any better than last night’s concert) tour.
To Eric and his band, thanks for a great show.