Concert Details

20 Aug 08 - Eric Clapton


Venue: Hallenstadion

City: Zurich

Country: Switzerland

Band Lineup:

Eric Clapton – guitar, vocals
Doyle Bramhall II – guitar, backing vocals
Chris Stainton – keyboards
Willie Weeks – bass
Abe Laboriel Jr – drums
Michelle John – backing vocals
Sharon White – backing vocals


Jakob Dylan

Show Notes:

Zurich represented the 25th show of Eric’s 2008 Summer Tour. Jakob Dylan, who has been tour support for some gigs on the second Summer leg, joined EC on stage for the encore "Crossroads".

Special Guest(s):

Jakob Dylan – guitar / vocals *

Set List:

01. Tell The Truth
02. Key To The Highway
03. Hoochie Coochie Man
04. Here But I’m Gone
05. Outside Woman Blues
06. Isn’t It A Pity
07. Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad
08. Help Me
09. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out
10. Motherless Child
11. Travelling Riverside Blues
12. Running On Faith
13. Got To Get Better In A Little While
14. Little Queen of Spades
15. Before You Accuse Me
16. Wonderful Tonight
17. Layla
18. Cocaine
19. Crossroads *

Fan Reviews:

Review by Peter Howard / Au, Switzerland
I have being living in Switzerland for more than 30 years and have only missed two of Eric’s performances here. Eric’ concertat Zurich’s Hallenstadion on 20 August was undoubtedly the second best concert of all that I have been to (number one being the "From the Cradle" show with Jerry Portnoy on harmonica which was blues pure without any of the crowd jumping numbers such as Layla, Cocaine, Sheriff etc.).

Eric was in absolute top form producing some really blistering solos. Doyle’s slide work was stunning, but somehow he seemed to be holding back on his true potential. Willie is every bit as good as Nathan on bass. Abe’s drumming is very strong but maybe not entirely up to Steve Gadd’s standard. The girls’ (Sharon and Michelle) backing vocals were fantastic and completely comparable to the old team of Tessa and Katie.

But, apart from Eric, the star of the evening for me was Chris. Sensational keyboard work! Amazing that these over sixty guys (I am almost there myself) have not at all let up – to the contrary they just improve! I am convinced that the musicians play much better on these short tours rather than the long and very tiring around the world trips.

My favourites of the evening: "Got to Get Better in a Little While" and "Little Queen of Spades". Negative aspects: the sound was turned up far too loud during "Layla" and "Cocaine" – notes just merged into each other (the accustics in the Hallenstadion do not suit 100 db) and Jakob Dylan’s singing in the "Crossroads" encore. This is definitely not his song and he got the melody all wrong. All in all 9 out of 10 for this one.

Review by Patric Burkhardt / Basel, Switzerland
This was my third Eric Clapton concert after the "From The Cradle" Tour in 1994 and Montreux 1986 and for me it’s definitely one of many highlights in recent times. Jakob Dylan opened the evening with some soulful songs reminiscent of his father Bob Dylan .His lead guitarist sometimes played like Dire Strait’s Mark Knopfler. Overall this was a very fine performance of Jakob and his band.

After a short break, Eric Clapton and his band started with "Tell The Truth" into a bluesy set including six songs from the legendary "Derek and the Dominoes" album. To hear songs like "Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad" and "Got To Get Better In A Little While" in concert, was at least for me, a big but welcome surprise.

I was pleased to hear so many blues numbers and especially the Cream classic, "Outside Woman Blues", as it’s one of my favorites!
With "Here But I’m Gone" and "Isn’t It A Pity" they played also new material and from them "Isn’t It A Pity" I’d like the most.
I really loved the acoustic set in the middle of the show with songs like "Help Me", "Nobody Knows You" or "Motherless Child" and for me it was one of the real highlights in a more than two hour blues show. Apart from Mr. Clapton, Doyle Bramhall II had a lot to show and his solo spots were extraordinary, the same goes to longtime band member Chris Stainton.

They finalized the evening with Clapton classics "Wonderful Tonight", "Layla" (original version), "Cocaine" and "Crossroads" – the last being a duet with Jakob Dylan. With this in mind, "it was wonderful tonight".

Review by Nadja T / Switzerland
First of all, thank you Mr. Clapton for making my 30th concert in my hometown such a memorable one and one of the best Ive heard.
While I thought Munich a few days ago could not be topped sound-wise, I was wrong. Munich pales compared to Zurich. What a magical performance Zurich was! An enthusiastic audience and no ushers make all the difference to the artists on stage. And EC showed us what he can do when he lets loose a little bit. When the spark jumps from the band to the crowd and the crowd picks it up, great things happen. An unusually talkative Eric was in great spirits. The phenomenal band and back-up singers made this concert a magnificent event.

The first two songs, "Tell The Truth" and "Key To The Highway", received good reception from the crowd. Those songs lead into a roaring first highlight of "Hoochie Coochie Man" with the crowd going wild from it’s beginning. Doyle and Chris took extended solos and Eric finished with a fierce and fast solo. "Here But Im Gone" was glorious and had EC smiling. He mentioned at the end that it is a Curtis Mayfield song. "Outside Woman Blues" was loud, terrific and simply great – so enthusiastic that EC almost missed the ending "hmmmm"! "Isn’t It A Pity" was back in the set list with a sensitive intro and EC very much at the center of things. Then came a very passionate "Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad" with EC almost out of breath at the end. It had a wonderful outro with Doyle and EC giving it a groovy feel, Chris soloing and all coming together for a gentle ending.

Next came another highlight with "Help Me" – a great intro by EC had the crowd clapping to the rhythm. EC was bending the notes, using vibrato a lot and at the end, he smiled broadly with the huge crowd reaction. "Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out" lead into "Motherless Child" with EC smiling and introducing the song at the end. "Travelling Riverside Blues" was introduced as "a Robert Johnson song" with fine solos all around and a very tight band. This lead into a quiet and beautiful "Running On Faith" with Doyle soloing at the end and again lots of smiles from EC.

"Got To Get Better In A Little Whiel" had Doyle using a wah wah pedal and EC smiling through most of the song. It was another spectacular highlight with EC’s phenomenal fearless solos. EC coaxed Willie Weeks into an extended solo. This song had lots of energy, was loud, aggressive and received a tremendous crowd reaction. "Little Queen of Spades" took the audience back down for an extended beautiful rendition of this song with everyone soloing extensively. EC blasted a solo out towards the end with great power. "Before You Accuse Me" was performed with much vigor and there were solos from Doyle, EC and Chris with EC taking the closing solo.

"Wonderful Tonight" lead into a loud and cracking "Layla" which was another highlight. It had a wonderful extended outro and the band went straight into "Cocaine" without missing a beat. "Cocaine" was another grand highlight with EC laying down a mean and dirty solo that I’ve never heard before in this song. The encore, "Crossroads," had Jakob Dylan joining the band. Jakob sang the first verse of the song, EC the second, Doyle soloing and EC and Jacob joining vocals for the third verse. EC ended the song with a great solo. The was crowd left in a euphoric state.

Review by Kornel Ringli
After the Hyde Park gig the one in Zurich was my second of this tour. It was one of my most favourite ones ever. While Hoochie Coochie Man, Outside Woman Blues and Cocaine were very good, Help Me was the big surprise of the evening. One because the crowd really enjoyed it, second because most people probably didn’t know the song, and finally, the band seemed to have fun playing it. In my opinion, the absolute stunner was Got To Get Better In A Little While. I have experienced a couple of live versions of the song, but the version in Zurich on 20 August was the best by far. Very tightly played, particularly by the rhythm section. Abe Laboriel Jr. really pushed the rest of the band to a top notch performance and Willie Weeks shone with a long and aggressive bass solo. Simply great.

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