Venue: Qwest 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
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 Cliff Todd
After years of waiting I finally was able to see my first Eric Clapton concert Saturday evening at the Qwest Center in Omaha and I was not disappointed. Even though the setlist was the same as previous shows I was still thrilled to hear the songs selected – just like those what were lucky enough to se EC during the NBTB tour, I felt equally fortunate to be hearing some of these Dominos songs so many years after Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs was released – Wow!
Opening the show was "Young Bob" and his band which played a short (too short) 35 minute set. Robert won the crowd over right away during "Phone Booth" when he referenced Omaha and fact that he didn’t want to get sucked into one of our tornados. Very funny stuff. Highlights from Robert’s set were "Phone Booth", "Bad Influence", "The 12 Year Old Boy" and "Twenty." A great set indeed.
After the switchover and lots of people yelling support to Lee Dickson on the stage, the lights went down and the energy ramped up – here comes Eric! "Tell The Truth" was a great opener and it caught a lot of the fans off guard – the guy next to me asked if it was a new song. I laughed.
"Key To the Highway" was great but the groove arrived when Eric, Steve and Willie layed it down during "Got To Get Better in A Little While" I loved this as a Dominos tune and in person I was hooked. Next the Derek buffet continued with "Little Wing" and "Why Does Love Got to Be So Sad?" WOW! What I find interesting is how Eric avoided so many of these songs for years but now as he plays them live, he really acts like he enjoys playing them – he was digging in for his solos tonight and he and Doyle laughed a lot and I think had a lot of fun.
The sit down set was the same as other shows but "Driftin’" was cool with the addition of Steve Jordan playing drums behind Eric solo up front – I’ve heard Eric play this song numerous times but with SJ behind him, this sounded different in a very good way. "Motherless Children" brought the crowd out of their seats as EC and Doyle riffed back and forth with effortless grace but as everyone thought that was a great effort, no one knew what was coming with "Little Queen of Spades" – ample solos all around, lots of cheers for Eric, Tim and the under appreciated Chris Stainton. Every time I watch Chris play I am really impressed as he is somewhat of the quiet one onstage. People appreciated the musicianship!
"Further On Up The Road" took me back to the rolling hotel days of the 70’s – no matter how many time I have heard this song, it is still really good. I had hoped Robert Cray might jump on during this one as he did back in 1986. "Wonderful Tonight" has its critics but tonight no one complained and it was fantastically received and played with emotion – a great rendition. I knew what was coming next and held my breath when the opening bars of "Layla" burned through the speakers. Until you hear that riff live, you haven’t lived! The crowd was really hot by now and the roar of "Layla" during the chorus was loud – fun was being had by all, even the band – lots of smiling and laughing all around.
Offstage and back for "Cocaine", Eric strapped on the "Christmascaster" and played more of a mellow / funky version of the song with off course the traditional hook that pulled you into the song. After the last yell of "Cocaine" by the crowd, Robert was back for a rocking "Crossroads." Eric and Robert sharing vocals, solos and again lots of smiles.
It was over way too quick and for a brief moment, it looked like we would get one more encore as Steve’s drum tech came out to make an adjustment and left another bottle of water…but then the lights came up. It was a great show and a great evening indeed! No interaction other than the "Thank you and good evening!" from Eric but he let his guitar do the talking. Thank you Eric!