[Slowhand] Slowhand sidekicks

Mel Boss darmel at sbcglobal.net
Sun Mar 25 13:28:52 EDT 2007

The current thread and debate of Derek&Duanne got me to consider Clapton-band guitar-ensembles over the years. I only saw one show this tour, but I thoroughly enjoyed the guitar lineup: Clapton-Trucks-Bramhall (and Cray adds a beautiful contrast). If I had been to several shows, I would have likely grown a bit tired of (the quantity of) Trucks' contribution, but for the one show that I saw, I enjoyed it. THANKS for a very memorable experience. The setlist was amazing for me...WOW. Thanks again!

Now that I got that out of my system (for the moment), let's get back to the original premise, Clapton's best guitar-sidekicks. I know what Rick Batty would say, and I would be hard-pressed to argue with his response to this question - "none" because as I am writing this, "Remastered at the RAH" is playing in the background that features the four-piece ECband. Hard to beat!

I like Mark Knopfler. We were watching/listening to the Shoreline performance from 1988 yesterday evening (who needs cable when you have boots like this?). I have to digress here. I purchased the released "AfterMidnight" video DVD (one disc), and a great-slowhander-buddy, PeterGordon, sent me the bootleg DVD version of this performance (2 discs), and the latter is a superior product. I presume that the material was compressed to fit on one DVD for release.

Back to "Knopfler" as best EC guitar-sidekick: I like contrast. I like it in relationships (who wants to marry ones self - like matrimonial-masturbation?). I like it in art. I like it in music, and MK's style provides a lovely contrast to Eric's in tone and style. Back in 1988 pickless Mark's fretwork, finger-pickin stood out yet contributed a warm "fill" for any gaps in Eric's lead. When they traded leads, the camaraderie and mutual respect was evident as they also traded warm smiles and toothy grins. Very cool. In the current tour, I enjoyed most the Robert Cray contributions for the same reasons that I appreciated Mark's... I also like Buddy Guy with Eric, but for different reasons. It was so much fun to watch them misbehave at Ronnie Scotts (off the wagon that night, I think).

Anyone else on this topic?

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