Venue: The O2
Country: United Kingdom
JEFF BECK & HIS BAND
Jeff Beck – guitar
Jason Rebello – keyboards
Rhonda Smith – bass
Narada Michael Walden – drums
ERIC CLAPTON & HIS BAND
Eric Clapton – guitar / vocals
Chris Stainton – keyboards
Walt Richmond – keyboards
Willie Weeks – bass
Steve Gadd – drums
Michelle John – backing vocals
Sharon White – backing vocals
Night 2 at The O2 for the 2010 "Together and Apart" shows by Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton. Next on the itinerary: New York’s Madison Square Garden on 18 and 19 February, followed by two gigs in Canada.
During Jeff Beck’s set
12 Piece Orchestra *
Sharon Corr – violin **
Imelda May – vocals ***
01. Eternity’s Breath
03. Led Boots
04. Corpus Christi Carol *
05. Bass solo by Rhonda Smith
06. Hammerhead *
07. Mna Na Heireann * **
08. People Get Ready
09. Big Block
10. Lilac Wine ***
11. A Day In The Life *
12. Nessun Dorma
01. Driftin’ – acoustic
02. Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out – acoustic
03. Running On Faith – acoustic
04. When Somebody Thinks You’re Wonderful
05. Tell The Truth
06. Key To The Highway
07. I Shot The Sheriff
09. Little Queen Of Spades
Jeff Beck and Eric Clapton
01. Shake Your Moneymaker
02. Moon River
03. You Need Love
04. Outside Woman Blues
05. Little Brown Bird
06. Wee Wee Baby
07. (I Want To Take You) Higher
08. Hi Ho Silver Lining – encore (Jeff / Eric vocals)
Were you there? Send your review to [email protected]
Review by Sue Lehmann / South London
My husband and I went to see this fantastic concert and were not disappointed. We were blown away by Jeff Beck’s skill and his performance of Nessun Dorma moved us to tears. Eric Clapton was outstanding! this was an amazing chance to see him at his best and plenty of unbelievable guitar solos which is what we came to see despite constant complaining from some around us that he wasn’t doing his run-of-the-mill stuff. If you are a true fan of superb guitar playing this is what we want to see and we loved every minute of it and could certainly handled another couple of hours with ease. The o2 venue is a little disturbing as people are constantly getting up and down to get drinks visit the bathroom, (frankly I would rather ‘wet myself’ than leave whilst Eric is playing these wonderful solo’s or anything else for that matter!) and a lot of people were leaving early which we found most disconcerting and frankly quite ‘rude’ in respect of these two great guitarist. A fantastic concert. I cannot recommend it highly enough although a little worried about Eric as he looked very tired and a little strained, guess due to his recent operation, but this did not affect his performance at all! Well done to both Eric and Jeff … more please!
Review by Jamie Bawn
Wow. what a concert. Jeff Beck kicked things off backed by a 12 piece orchestra to give an amazing slightly more mellow performance. His playing was top notch and I love the way he uses the whammy bar to full affect. Played songs which he plays regularly such as Led Boots and his take on The Beatles ‘A day in the Life’. The songs from his forthcoming album were really good and I loved the collaboration with Sharon Corr and the way he ended with classic song Nassun Dorma.
Clapton started acoustic and what a sound it was. The sound in o2 was perfect. Far superior to Albert Hall, and everywhere else i seen him. His hair was long, his playing was very confident, the best I heard since his 2004 tour where along with that he played the best I ever heard him. His acoustic set on Feb 14th was by far the best performed acoustic set I ever heard him do. The fingerpicking solo on Driftin was incredible, and because he had no rhythm guitarists, he played solos on every song, His playing was already better than that of Beck’s. Gone was Acoustic Layla tho, which apparently he played the night before.
The electric set was amaizing too, kickin off with Tell The Truth and another great solo in Key to the Highway. The highlight though was I shot the sheriff. This guitar solo on this caused a standing ovation for much of the crowd. Even now thinking about it, it makes my hairs stand on end it was that good. He finished with a great stomping version of Cocaine before Jeff Beck joins him on stage for an hour jam. In the last part of the show we had both guitarists and Jeff Beck stepped up a gear in terms of his playing and did most of the lead work. You need Love and Little Brown Bird showed them exchanging fiery solos though. Proper guitar slingers. Clapton wasn’t intimidated by Beck’s wizardry and came back at Jeff with stunning guitar solos.
They finished the night with Hi Ho Silver Lining. Cheesy, but glad I heard it once as its good to hear the actual person that wrote it perform it instead of some dodgy karaoke version, Jeff Beck actually hates that song so i reckon it was Clapton that encouraged him to play it, hence why Clapton sung most of it.
Fantastic powerful performance all round. Unbelievable that both guys are nearly 65. They are legends and Clapton’s voice was also worth a mention as like his playing, it has got better and better in recent years.
Review by Krishnan N. / Barnet, London
The best phrase to describe this concert would be "mediocre with periods of genius". This was meant to be a concert of pioneers, 2 of the best guitarist of all time. Eric Clapton, or God to some including me, has been the popular number one guitarist since the demise of his friends and rivals, the incomparable Duane Allman and the iconic Jimi Hendrix. Eric has transcended genres with his but his blues driven lead guitar is what has kept him in the firmly rooted to top spot for almost half a century. He is the reason why young men and women for the past 40 years have picked up guitar and played till they have callouses on the fingertips. Eric, Jimi, Duane Allman, Billy Gibbons, Brian May and B.B. King have been my inspirations to play the guitar and Eric is the sole reason why I love playing the blues rock so much.
My knowledge of Jeff Beck isn’t that great, all I know is he was the successor to Great Jimmy Page, who was the successor to Eric in the same band, in the Yardbirds and most of his music tends to be instrumental and is known as the "guitarist’s guitarist".
Jeff Beck opened the show with some hauntingly beautiful instrumental work. There were nice cameos from Sharon Corr, on her violin, and Imelda May, vocals. But Jeff Beck left the best till last, his set crescendo-ed with a spine chilling rendition of Nessun Dorma, definitely one to try out at home on my guitar.
Then "God" walked on the stage, sat down and played some gorgeous acoustic blues with all the emotion you expect from him. Since I was sitting in the upper tier I was concentrating more on the big screen than the stage trying pick out the tabs from the limited fretboard camera shots. After a few songs, Eric picked up the light blue Strat and the crowd chattered in response, mainly whispers about a certain Layla. The crowd felt there was something coming up to "rock out to". Lo and behold, "God" did deliver. I Shot The Sheriff was immense, followed by Queen of Spades, which was ethereal. This was followed by a rendition of "Cocaine" that made the hairs on the back of my neck stand on end. The crowd was positively shaking with every one of Eric riffs. Then Jeff Beck entered the Stage and the crowd was expecting more, whispers of Layla again. However after "Shake you Moneymaker" the concert took a "left turn somewhere around Albuquerque" and ended with "High ho Silver lining" which seemed to be a poor culmination, since Jeff Beck really was not in a singing mood and the poor backing singers didn’t know all the words. This concert ended up being a let down, and not to the high level that is expected of an Eric Clapton concert . All the songs I love, with the exception of Cocaine and I Shot The Sheriff, weren’t even on the set list. This concert never really got going, the crowd were waiting for the anthems and end up going home in the damp and miserable London night with a whinge and a moan about the songs. I’ll give you one guess as to what the main gripe was ……Yep, Layla, which turns 40 this year, was AWOL from the setlist. I think if Eric had played the Dominos version of Layla, the crowd would have erupted and you would have needed to send a search party to find the Millennium Dome and its contents somewhere over the North Pole.
As an aspiring guitarist, I had come with an ulterior motive to gain some insights into playing like Eric, I did learn some new things from watching Eric but not the songs that I love to play. I would have been over the Moon if there was a bit of Sunshine of your Love, White Room, Guitar Weeps Gently, Bad Love, Crossroads and the mighty Layla, which I seem to drone on about, but I love that song. Finally I have to comment on one more shortcoming, which was that the concert was played on St. Valentine’s day and I think Eric being atypical bloke forgot that fact and let down most of the women in the audience. I witnessed one couple on the tube ride home, where the husband was consoling a very visibly upset wife, because that song was not played.
I rate this concert 7.5/10, only reason it made to 7.5 was because the performances of Cocaine and I Shot the Sheriff were immense.
Review by David Knight
I have to say, I was little concerned as to whether new-for-the-tour band-members Rhonda Smith and Narada Michael Waldon would live up to reputation of the regular Jeff Beck Band pairing of Tal Wilkenfield and Vinnie Colaiuta. I needn’t have worried. Despite some slightly chaotic drumming on the opening number, composure was quickly regained – and the band proceeded to deliver on every level. Rhonda’s extrovert and attacking bass providing the perfect foil to Beck’s distinctive and unique style. Orchestral backing was unexpected – and worked well – adding real space and depth to the mix – not least on Nessun Dorma, culminating in a big, rich and magnificently ‘brassy’ climax to the ‘first half’! Good effort Jeff!
EC’s opening acoustic numbers were performed in intimate style and with characteristic virtuosity. Nicely done. Well-received, and a perfect contrast to the exuberant Beck set. The Strat went on. The pace picked up and ‘I Shot the Sheriff’ and ‘Cocaine’ followed, providing a truly classic and popular entree into the ‘electric’ part of Clapton’s set. The vocal quality of Michelle John and Sharon White’s backing singers shone through the mix from the opening bars. Beautiful.
I’d like to continue in this positive frame of mind, but sadly, the last hour of the show didn’t really ‘do it’ for me. Given Eric’s tremendous back-catalogue, I was expecting a more varied cross-section – and a little more ‘mood’ to the music. I found the choice of songs a little ‘narrow’ for my liking however, verging almost on the tedious in some places, and not helped by the rather over-done and all-too-frequent piano breaks. Despite Steve Gadd’s unerring commitment to tightness and power throughout, and Willie Weeks’ solid bass lines, this just wasn’t enough to turn this set around. Deteriorating sound quality, an all-too-glum-looking and un-communicative Eric, and a seemingly even less enthusiastic Walt Richmond on keys didn’t help matters and for me at least, the show started to wilt.
I’m not sure either Beck or Clapton really gained from this collaboration – other than in strict cash-terms. Am I glad to have been there? Of course I am – I saw two of the greatest guitarists the world has ever seen – ‘On stage, together and apart’. Would I pay to sit through the show again? Probably not. Clapton and Beck will always attract an audience – that’s for sure – and I’ll probably still be in the queue for a ticket, but I felt just a little ‘short-changed’ last night – not a feeling I would have reckoned on. Perhaps I’m just getting too old? Or perhaps, just too old to be happy with anything less than 100% effort, from 100% of the guys on stage – for 100% of the show?
Review by Alessandro Vailati / Cremona, Italy
I’m an italian Clapton fan since 1983 and I’m 40 years old. The music of Eric changed my life, I’ve seen more than 20 concerts,never disappointed…before the last two!
I’m not a huge fan of Beck, but He was very good. In 2 nights he changed the setlist ,gave the audience great surprises with special guests and an orchestra. Eric arrived,sang and played very well, but what? THE SAME OLD SONGS…Maybe He’s not ready for an anticipation of his new album like Jeff did-I listened only to a new song, a cover of Fats Waller-but why not use other songs? I know that most part of the crowd needs Cocaine or Driftin’ but why not combine with other classics? He made a Blues number-the eternal Little Queen of Spades-and why not Blow Wind Blow or All Your Love or Floatin Bridge? And what about The Core instead of Tell the Truth? I wanted new life from the acoustic set and he gives me Nobody Knows Me?? Please Eric give us gems from your catalogue… Surprise us with Watch out for Lucy or Homeboy!!
The final part of the concert with the 2 stars together was great even if too similar of the gigs in Japan. I really appreciate Shake your Moneymaker and Moon River. However it’s difficult to understand the reason of the lost performance of Crossroads in the encore. I hope Eric wil have in the future Doyle Bramhall 2 again.I think this person could pull our hero.
Review by Gabrielle Hollington
Saw both O2 shows, brilliant as ever .Jeff Beck yet another amazing guitarst Eric has introduced me to over the years (& they are many!) Who could moan about either of these performances. To see these two together is nothing short of heaven if it wasn’t for the cold O2 Arena with it’s stone cold floors & constant to-ing & fro-ing from the audience. Eric even remarked to the audience ( he spoke to us! ) about the cold. This is something I do think Eric is missing, more of a verbal connection with ‘the faithful’ would be appreciated sometimes. I know it’s the music that counts, but even so. Let us hear a bit more than that same old ‘thankyou’. Even if it’s only a few more inroductions to songs. Eric did look a bit tired and the grey stubble made him look a bit grizzled. Do hope he’s not over-doing it. With a few less songs on the second evening, this was possibly because because Saturday’s performance finished quite late .Always sad when these much looked forward to concerts are over