Venue: Jerome Schotenstein Center
Country: United States
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
This was the final performance of Eric’s massive 2006 / 2007 World Tour.
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
11. Little Queen Of Spades
12. Further On Up The Road
13. Wonderful Tonight
15. Cocaine (encore)
16. Crossroads (encore) *
Review by Jim / Buckeye State
I headed to the concert in Columbus with a chip on my shoulder. I had great seats to the Detroit show last September, that was the only show on the entire tour to be canceled. I found out after driving five hours to get there. I got tickets to the Columbus show then found out Derek Trucks was pulling out. The Columbus show was the last show on a long tour. I feared listless performances from a band needing rest. After watching the concert, I feel I should ask for forgiveness.
The show just ended, and I was blown away. Robert Cray and his band was outstanding. His crisp clear lyrics and blues guitar was entertaining and enjoyable. Clapton and his band completely tore the place up. To watch his band so energized was exciting. From the moment he stepped on stage he rocked the place. My first exposure to Eric was watching him in the Concert for Bangledesh movie in the early 70’s. I’ve seen him live several times. As a 49 year old lifetime fan, I felt as if this concert was custom designed for my generation. It takes guts to forego the popular newer tunes and play songs that those in the audience under 35 probably wouldn’t know. It’s so cool the way he just walks out on stage with no fluff and just plays. The only interaction with the crowd is a thank you, or to acknowledge a solo from his outstanding band. To see Lttle Wing performed live was the highlight for me. I wish he could have played another hour.
I’ve read the San Diego show was filmed for a DVD. I hope that’s true. It would be cool to experience the show with Derek Trucks’ slide guitar. I’m looking forward to the Guitar Festival in Chicago. I’m not surprised it sold out in 10 minutes. I sure hope Eric tours again. God Bless.
Review by Bob White
Just got home from the Shot and EC’s concert. I have been a big fan since I heard Born Under a Bad Sign by Cream while in the Navy in ’68 or ’69. The first time I saw him was the Derek and Dominos tour in Columbus, Oh in the early 70’s at St. John Arena on OSU campus. (It was on July 4th and kids threw fireworks in the air during the concert) Thirty plus years later and couple hundred yards across a river and highway I saw him again with my wife, who also saw the first concert. I have seen every concert in Cleveland, Blossom Music Center or Columbus since then, and will keep going as long as EC has concerts.
So my review of tonight’s concert will not be very critical. He pretty well crossed my time lines with his playlist, and the versions of those songs sounded great. I agree with others, those first five songs are hard to beat…brought back some youthful memories. Little Wing…that had punch! Special mention to Wonderful Tonight as danced to it at one of my twin daughters weddings last June. She had picked it out for the Father Daughter dance and Eric mentioned two of his girls where at the concert. Some new faces with Eric this time. I like the little solos by Chris, Willie, Steve and Tim. Doyle played well as usual… he is a strong force in the concert.
Robert Cray opened the show and was crisp as ever. I appreciate his music and style of blues presentation.
After reading an article about EC and his once bad habits, I wrote a three page letter to him asking him to fly right. He probably never saw the letter, but regardless got his life together and has provided me with hundreds of hours of listening pleasure. I told you I wasn’t going to be critical.
Review by Graham Stead
The concert started with Robert Cray and his band, who were superb. Cray played some of his well known songs, such as Bad Influence, but he was not on for longer than 40 minutes. His technique was excellent and he sang the blues with a lot of feeling. He hunches himself over his Fender Stratocaster. He was supported by drums, bass and keyboards. Unfortunately, the Schottenstein Center was only about 70% full then (it was packed by the time Eric arrived) and many people missed a real treat.
Eric walked on to the stage playing a few notes on his guitar and he and his band launched into the beginning of a series of songs from Layla and Other Assorted Love songs album. Eric was clearly going to play the blues, fast and slow, and was not into a popular hits series. This was music for people who have listened to Clapton for decades, who know his music and its development, and who appreciate the blues tremendously. And what a tremendous performance it was!
They first kicked into Tell the Truth which is an energetic and powerful song. Chris Stainton was on keyboards and you may know that he has played with Eric for a few decades and was also backing Joe Cocker in the 60s. There was also an organist, bass player, drummer, two female back up vocalists and Doyle Bramhall, the second guitarist. All of these musicians are very talented. Bramhall is excellent on guitar. What is interesting about Bramhall is that he plays left handed but with the strings upside down the treble strings are on top and his one guitar is scratched from his strumming above the strings. He also played some amazing slide guitar and complemented Clapton’s playing very well. Derek Trucks was not present (he is a 27 year old guitarist from the Allman Brothers Band and the Derek Trucks Band), which was unfortunate but I was wondering what else could have been added to this wonderful music.
Clapton had his carpet there and clearly this is Clapton space. The other musicians played on this carpet once or twice during the acoustic set â€“ but this was for Clapton and symbolic of his status as arguably the premier blues guitarist in the world today. Clapton is still brilliant and perhaps even better than he was 30 years ago. He is fluid in his playing, extremely fast when he needs to be, and plays with a tremendous amount of emotion. It is on his face and in his playing. He played Fender strats and only strats. He played black Fenders throughout and during the encore he had a cream colored one. And yes, there were the Marshall amplifiers reminiscent of his days
with Cream. He wore a black shirt, blue denims and brown shoes. He was somewhat unshaven too. Following Tell the Truth we were treated to songs such as Key to the Highway, Got to Get Better in a Little While, Why Does Love Got Be So Sad, and the Hendrix song, Little Wing Clapton then did an acoustic set which was also supported by his musicians. This included among others Drifting (From the Cradle CD), Outside Woman Blues (Disraeli Gears), and Running on Faith (Journeyman). An electric set followed with an explosive version of Robert Johnson’s Little Queen of Spades (Me and Mr. Johnson). Then he played Further on Up the Road, the well-known Wonderful Tonight and, of course, Layla. What an excitement to hear the opening chords of Layla. At the end of a magnificent Layla, complete with the extended piano piece courtesy of Mr Chris Stainton, tinsel was fired into the air with some lightening flashes and that was it.
The crowd would have none of it and applauded for all of 5 minutes until the musicians returned. Again Clapton played a few notes while walking towards his carpet. They ended with Cocaine (from the CD Slowhand) and Crossroads (The Robert Johnson song that was played on Cream’s Wheels of Fire). Robert Cray played the opening notes and verse of Crossroads and then Eric completed the song. Clapton is an incredible artist and it is a show that I shall remember for many years. We travelled home listening to the Layla album in the car can one ever get enough of that album?
Review by Mike Barnes / Columbus OH
While I was hoping for a longer set here in his part time hometown, as well as it being the last stop, I was still thrilled with the set we got. Even without Trucks, EC and Doyle played well together. Neither was perfect, but they make good compliments to one another. The highlight for me was Little Queen of Spades, probably 15 minutes or more of pure blues. Like the stranger next to me said, It doesn’t get any better than this! The solos on this one were great. The Dominoes tunes in the first set were great crowd pleasers, eventhough I suppose many didn’t even know the songs. A testament to the great music, and the way this group played so well together. No one sat down until the the start of Driftin’. That sit down set was really put together too! Driftin’ was beautiful, but the band really jammed on Outside Woman Blues. If you weren’t having fun during that one, you must be dead.
I really can’t say Wonderful Tonight was needed, but it did give us a chance to sit and catch our breath. Another highlight was EC’s family being there, they were REALLY into the show. The kids ..with hearing protection.. were keeping the folks in our section up on their feet! Who wants to sit and look bored while little kids are pumped and jamming? Not Me! The encores were super – but I was almost in ‘let down’ mode by then, knowing it was almost over. Yep, still just 16 songs. Oh well, like was said before – It doesn’t get any better than this!
Review by Ben Hutchins
Well I saw Clapton for the first time ever last night at the Schottenstein, and was blown away by the technical brilliance everyone showed during the event. I’d had the tickets since Christmas so have been looking forward to it ever since. I’m 28, so I was a bit younger than most of the people there, and honestly alot of what he played wasn’t recognizable to me. But I’m glad he did, I really love the blues style of playing, and the long instrumental solos and Clapton’s voice is just made to sing the blues, there’s no other way of puttingit. You just don’t hear the skill and riffing in music nowadays like the legends play it. The real highlight for me though was seeing Robert Cray play, I had never even heard of him before and as of right now I own 2 cd’s of his. I just loved the pure emotion he poured into his songs. Overall, I had a great night with my friends and we were all blown away by what could only be described as the kind of music that just isn’t being made anymore and unfortunately probably won’t again.