[Slowhand] Clapton creams off £4m
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Sun May 14 20:48:23 EDT 2006
Clapton creams off £4m
By Jim Armitage, Evening Standard
12 May 2006 Eric Clapton earned nearly £4million last year, without recording a single new song or going on a major tour.
The 61-year-old guitar legend awarded himself a £1.4 million pay rise after reaping a fortune from royalties and sales of his vast back catalogue - including the fittingly named Money And Cigarettes. He also released an album of cover versions, Me And Mr Johnson.
The musician nicknamed Slowhand, who has a total fortune of about £135 million, is likely to earn even more this year through sales of his latest album Back Home, which he is promoting on a world tour. His huge pay deal is revealed in the newly published accounts of Marshbrook, the company which represents his business interests. They show gross profits were £5.8 million, up from £5.1 million the year before. Clapton's total sales and royalties were £8.9 million against £5.8 million the year before. A brief note to the accounts says merely: "The group has had a satisfactory year." Not included in the numbers, which cover the year to 31 March 2005, is the vast fortune he will have made from reforming his supergroup Cream for concerts at the Royal Albert Hall and New York's Madison Square Garden last year. Fans paid as much as £2,000 a ticket to see Clapton team up with former drummer Ginger Baker and bass player Jack Bruce for their first full concerts
together for nearly 37 years. Box office receipts for the New York gigs alone totalled nearly $11million. Although Clapton claims to have calmed down his hectic work schedule to help care for his new baby with wife Melia, 30, he is still working the international stadium circuit, kicking off a long stint at the Royal Albert Hall next week. The Sunday Times Rich List recently placed Clapton at joint 420th wealthiest person in the country, sharing the spot with fellow musician Phil Collins and the Marquess of Bath. Clapton is Britain's eighth richest rock star, far outstripping his former Cream band members thanks to his hugely successful solo career and his penning of such classics as Layla. But he has also proved to be an astute businessman-In 2003, many in the City thought Clapton was losing his mind when he bought a 50 per cent stake in the heavily loss-making tailor Cordings of Piccadilly. But earlier this month Cordings was able to report that it had made its
second year of profits and was looking at opening franchises in Japan and a new London store.
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