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Thread: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

  1. #1
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Ok, first the myth. George and Patti's relationship was broken, a marriage only by name.
    Now the important stuff. Clapton is expository in his playing: He takes a theme and works it out, "explains" it for 10 minutes, and says something new. At least in the past.

    George was the master of the 10 second lead. His playing fits into the theme of Beatles-stamped songs. Realizing that his leads had to say a lot in a short amount of time, he came up with leads and rhythms that were short but original. The opening of "I Want You" is understated and marvelous. His choice of notes and his style on "The End" are sublime and perfect.

    George regurlarly said with admirations that Clapton was a much better guitarist than him. Clapton's creative, epic leads build sometimes to the point that your heart breaks. (Layla, with much credit to Duane).

    I think George judged his own playing too harshly. As a teen, he sat down and learned every song on a Chet Atkins record and by all accounts played them well. His playing is inventive and instinctive, short but meaningful.

    Now the funny: George was tight-fisted, and he hated the the taxman. He said of the peak of Beatledom in England that the band had so much to do with the price of the pound. So he and Clapton went on tour in Japan, and they had a fight over money. They remained friends, and they say George called Clapton his "husband-in-law". George was funnier than most folks know.
    If we'd known we were going to be the Beatles, we'd have tried harder.--George Harrison

  2. #2

    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Quote Originally Posted by ch willie View Post
    Ok, first the myth. George and Patti's relationship was broken, a marriage only by name.
    Now the important stuff. Clapton is expository in his playing: He takes a theme and works it out, "explains" it for 10 minutes, and says something new. At least in the past.

    George was the master of the 10 second lead. His playing fits into the theme of Beatles-stamped songs. Realizing that his leads had to say a lot in a short amount of time, he came up with leads and rhythms that were short but original. The opening of "I Want You" is understated and marvelous. His choice of notes and his style on "The End" are sublime and perfect.
    At least it all worked out well in the end:


  3. #3
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Haha. The guitar was stolen too but he cared enough to get it back after decades of separation. Not so with Patti. :)
    If we'd known we were going to be the Beatles, we'd have tried harder.--George Harrison

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    Forum Member Sérgio's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Clapton got away with it, but a few years later he met a certain Mr. Jagger. “Pleased to meet you! What’s mademoiselle’s name?”

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    Forum Member DanTheBluesMan's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Quote Originally Posted by Sérgio View Post
    Clapton got away with it, but a few years later he met a certain Mr. Jagger. “Pleased to meet you! What’s mademoiselle’s name?”
    pretty sure they knew each other well before the infamous Patti episode. Jones (Brian), Mick, David Bowie, Keef, Jeff Beck, EC, George, John, Paul, all knew or heard of each other since the equivalent of our junior high school. There was much co-mingling.
    "Live and learn and flip the burns"

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    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Don’t think the Beatles heard of the Jagger or any of them until The Beatles were making it and the Stones were playing a gig. Liverpool is not close to London so there’s no way they knew any of The Stones or Clapton. There’s no documentation that says The Beatles knew any of them until they got to London, when they were all young adults. Nerd here.
    If we'd known we were going to be the Beatles, we'd have tried harder.--George Harrison

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    Forum Member Offshore Angler's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Clapton was a great blues/rock guitarist before he lost his mind, but his playing tends to get sloppy here and there. He gets great credit and deserves respect for paving the road for those who followed in his steps.

    George, on the other hand, was never less than exquisite as a player (imho) and as a songwriter, there is no comparison between the two. Crackerbox Palace, What You Value, etc., all show George's tremendous artistry. And damn, could George come up with a hook for a Beatles tune! Imagine Day Tripper sans George's contribution.
    "No harmonic knowledge, no sense of time, a ghastly tone, unskilled vibrato, and so on. Chuck is one of the worst guitar players I know" -Gravity Jim

  8. #8
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Lost his mind? Why do you say that?

  9. #9
    Forum Member phantomman's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Quote Originally Posted by Cogs View Post
    Lost his mind? Why do you say that?
    +1

    That's a pretty provocative assertion.

    While I must confess that I haven't had much interest in Clapton's career after "Layla" I do not begrudge him his commercial success. Consumers vote with their wallets.
    "When injustice becomes law then rebellion becomes duty."

  10. #10
    Forum Member ch willie's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Clapton has always admitted that he struggles to write. I remember an interview in which he said, if someone has written a better song than mine, I’ll rather put that on my album. Pretty honest look at his limitations.

    George is my favorite guitarist. I’m glad you mention songs of 33 1/3. It’s my second fave albums of his. Just below ATMP and a tiny bit higher than Living in the Material World and Extra Texture.
    If we'd known we were going to be the Beatles, we'd have tried harder.--George Harrison

  11. #11
    Forum Member OldStrummer's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    It's been my experience that drug and alcohol addiction wind up turning people into horrible, self-centered and disreputable shells of humanity. If you've ever known someone -- especially someone close -- who succumbed to this affliction, you know what I mean.

    Clapton's story is a picturebook example of recovery and redemption. Once free of the chains of addiction, many former addicts turn to "paying it forward." Clapton sold off several guitar collections to pay for the addiction treatment center he founded in Antigua. In his new life, he has shrugged off the "center stage" persona and as he once confessed, just wanted to be a guitar player in a band.

    That's one of the reasons I so like his latest album, The Lady In The Balcony: In the YouTube videos, even though Eric is the draw, one gets the sense that these are simply four (talented) friends getting together to make a little music.

    One thing I've noticed that no one else has seemed to mention, is that Clapton's fingers don't seem to have the dexterity and flash he once exhibited. Hey, he's getting older (aren't we all?) and it happens. He's admitted as much, but he's got such a knowledge and command of the fingerboard, and such an exquisite sense of phrasing that no one notices or cares. I have been studying his playing on this album and have realized that Chris Stainton (keyboards) adds color notes to some of the chords Eric plays. Is that a B7#9? Well, it looks like Eric is only playing the B7 -- Stainton adds the sharp 9. This is true on many of the numbers, which is another reason I so like the album.
    Striving to be ordinary

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  12. #12
    Forum Member Sérgio's Avatar
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    Re: Eric Clapton and George Harrison

    Quote Originally Posted by DanTheBluesMan View Post
    pretty sure they knew each other well before the infamous Patti episode. Jones (Brian), Mick, David Bowie, Keef, Jeff Beck, EC, George, John, Paul, all knew or heard of each other since the equivalent of our junior high school. There was much co-mingling.

    I was making a joke about their “incident”

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