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Blues Highlights: Eric Clapton’s Rainbow Concert

The live album Eric Clapton’s Rainbow Concert saw the light of day when it was released on September 10, 1973, some nine months after the attempt to reawaken the troubled guitarist took place. The idea for the “comeback” concert was that of Clapton’s close friend Pete Townshend who saw this as a way to bring the musician, who at one point had been England’s who’s who of guitarists, out of his drug fueled hiatus from music that followed the dissolution of Derek and the Dominos. The concert, which actually consisted of two shows, took place at London’s Rainbow Theatre on January 13th and saw Eric Clapton being supported by a number of friends and contemporary musicians. Those that took the stage alongside the reemerging blues-rock musician included Townshend, Ronnie Wood, Rebop Kwaku Baah,  and former Blind Faith band mates, Steve Winwood and Richard Grech. When Eric Clapton’s Rainbow Concert was released, only a small number of the songs performed were included on the album (six to be exact). With his performances at the Rainbow Theatre (and the resulting live album), Eric Clapton indeed made a comeback that those who loved him, both friends and fans, hoped he would. The following year he would release the follow up to his eponymous debut album, the classic 461 Ocean Boulevard.

Fun Fact: The Rainbow Concert marked the first time that Eric Clapton’s beloved Fender Stratocaster, Blackie, was played live.

 

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