Eric Clapton and Friends: The Breeze; An Appreciation of J.J. Cale (Universal)

 |   |  <1 min read

Tom Petty and the Heartbreakers: The Old Man and Me
Eric Clapton and Friends: The Breeze; An Appreciation of J.J. Cale (Universal)

Eric Clapton frequently speaks of himself as a messenger, originally passing on the blues then in the Seventies discovering the music of Bob Marley and J.J. Cale whose songs he covered to great success.

Although not a close friend of the late Tulsa-based Cale until they collaborated on the Grammy-winning Road to Escondido in 2006, Clapton felt strongly enough about the man and his slippery, slightly swampy and crafted music to organise this tribute with Tom Petty, Mark Knopfler (who copped some of Cale's downbeat delivery), John Mayer, fellow Tulsa resident Don White, Willie Nelson, pedal steel player Greg Leisz and Derek Trucks.

The blues-based guitar work by these stellar players is suitably understated and delivered with pinpoint accuracy, but few songs stray far from Cale's originals.

The best tracks are those which do: John Mayer offers a slow and humid Magnolia; Nelson and Clapton make Songbird into a lost country classic; White and Clapton treat I'll Be There as truckstop-jukebox honky-tonk pop, and Petty's languidly whispered The Old Man and Me with Leisz is a quiet standout.

Otherwise this, lovely though it is, mostly comes off as rather too reverential and polite.

For more on Clapton and Cale see here. Elsewhere also has a lot on Clapton's long career starting here.

Share It

Your Comments

jeff - Aug 20, 2014

Having heard a little of this tribute from Eric Clapton and friends I was slightly underwhelmed- as I have been with a lot of Eric's music since the late 80's. He lost his mojo somewhere along the way and hasn't turned round to find it. The songs on this release that verge from the note for note original certainly stand out. More of that would have kept my attention and increased it's appeal for me.

post a comment

More from this section   Music articles index

Bobby Womack: The Bravest Man in the Universe (XL)

Bobby Womack: The Bravest Man in the Universe (XL)

In addition to the trouble he inflicted on himself -- notably drugs, shot at by his wife when she discovered his affair with a step-daughter -- it seems life continues to deal hard blows to the... > Read more

IN BRIEF: A quick overview of some recent international releases

IN BRIEF: A quick overview of some recent international releases

With so many CDs commanding and demanding attention Elsewhere will run this occasional column which scoops up releases by international artists, in much the same way as our SHORT CUTS column... > Read more

Elsewhere at Elsewhere

HISTORY ACTUALLY REPEATS (2014): Rare, lost or out-of-print New Zealand music gets a second coming

HISTORY ACTUALLY REPEATS (2014): Rare, lost or out-of-print New Zealand music gets a second coming

This week I was invited to a function in Auckland hosted by recordedmusic.co.nz. The event -- at which Shona Laing and John Hanlon performed -- was entitled Tied to the Tracks, named after a... > Read more

House of Shem: Island Vibration (Isaac)

House of Shem: Island Vibration (Isaac)

If it's true, as I am told, this album went to number one on the New Zealand charts it confirms two things: in this part of the Pacific we love them familiar summertime reggae grooves; and also... > Read more