[Slowhand] Sonny Landreth Interview

DeltaNick deltanick at comcast.net
Thu Aug 28 12:17:54 EDT 2008

The latest (August 28, 2008) issue of "BluesWax," an online blues e-zine, features an interview with Sonny Landreth, in which he discusses Eric Clapton. Below are a couple of excerpts.

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Bob Putignano for "BluesWax" (BW): Speaking of Clapton, that performance with you at the 2007 Crossroads was amazing.

Sonny Landreth (SL): Thank you, that performance was the one for me. I've been listening to Eric forever and he's my original guitar hero. So at the Crossroads last year, man when he kicked into his solo on "Hell at Home" that's when it really hit me, and I said, "Oh, man, this is it!"

BW: Was that performance planned in advance? It looked a bit impromptu.

SL: Well, it was both. Eric really wanted to help out and we came on first again, just like we did on the first Crossroads show in Dallas four years ago. But this time he wanted to sit in, yet we winged it pretty much. That's what I love about that, it made the performance very spontaneous and it made for it to capture the heat of the moment.

BW: To continue on about Clapton, what were some of your favorite eras of Clapton growing up?

SL: Many eras, first with Mayall's Bluesbreakers, which was the vibe I was going for on the track Eric did on my disc, "Storm of Worry"; which reminds me of "Double Crossing Time" from Mayall's Bluesbreakers with Eric. Then there was Cream with the big Marshalls, followed by the time Eric spent with Delaney & Bonnie, that I dug too, which by then Eric was being more minimal with his playing and at that time he got turned on to the Robbie Robertson-approach of guitar playing from The Band. Which is how I found out about The Band's recording Music From Big Pink. I saw an interview with Clapton where he was raving about Big Pink, which I immediately bought that very same afternoon.

BW: That Band record really stands the test of time and does not receive the acclaim it should. It really had a huge effect on a lot of musicians and fans.

SL: That's right and The Band is really a cornerstone of the history. You cannot say enough about them. It really worked for me, with their songwriting and their whole concept. They were a big influence on me for sure.


BW: Is there anymore talk of another Crossroads getting setup?

SL: I would think so, Clapton did not say for sure, but I have a feeling it will. It's really close to Eric's heart and that fact that he is so much about helping people; he's really special, so I think he's in an every three year or so pattern.

BW: Clapton is turning up on so many recordings this year.

SL: That's true, and again that's part of Clapton wanting to help out a lot of people wherever he can. He's on vacation now and it's a well-deserved break, but for somebody who keeps talking about getting off the road and not work so much, he sure stays pretty busy! [Laughs]

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