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Q & A with Marc Roberty

Marc Roberty is the author of Eric Clapton-Day by Day, The Early Years and the soon to be released Eric Clapton-Day by Day, The Later Years.  Here, he gives an interview on Music Tomes. Follow the link for the rest of the interview.

When did you first hear Clapton?

I first heard Clapton in 1965 when I bought the “For Your Love” single by The Yardbirds. I actually liked the poppy sound. Then I played the b-side, “Got To Hurry”, which changed my world. As a 10 year old kid I had not heard such guitar sounds before. I was intrigued and wanted more. After a lot of research I found out it was Eric Clapton’s guitar and he had just joined John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers. I have followed him ever since. It also made me appreciate the guitar as an instrument which led me to Jeff Beck and Jimi Hendrix.

The two volumes of Eric Clapton, Day by Day blend biographical elements, discography, and detailed tour details, down to the setlists. How did you decide on this format, rather than writing a biography or a discography?

I wanted to put together all aspects of Eric’s musical life over the last 50 years and hopefully produce the ultimate reference book on him. I felt a simple biography or discography would only cover certain aspects of his musical career.

Take us a little behind-the-scenes with a little overview of the research you did for these in-depth books.

I have quite a large collection of old music papers, which are always a good source of information. I spent many months in various newspaper archives going back to 1963 onwards to research tour dates and venues, as well as concert adverts. On top of that I had a lot of help from Eric and his office allowing me access to tour itineraries, etc. I interviewed a multitude of musicians, producers and engineers which were very enlightening and revealing.

Go to Musictomes.com to keep reading!

Eric Clapton, Day by Day presents Clapton’s professional life in music in a day-by-day format, giving details of which bands he joined and left, all recordings made – both released and unreleased – as well as guest appearances he made on other artists’ records, and concert tours.

With Eric Clapton’s 50th anniversary in the music business approaching in 2013, now is the perfect time for this comprehensive biography.

Eric Clapton’s Career Milestone

Guest Blogger: Marc Roberty, author of Eric Clapton, Day by Day: The Early Years, 1963-1982  and the forthcoming Eric Clapton, Day by Day: The Later Years, 1983-20013.

2013 saw Eric Clapton celebrating fifty years as a professional musician. What better time to look back in every detail of his musical history? You could argue that Eric’s most creative and exciting period can be found in the first volume of Day by Day, but that would be a little short-sighted. Those first decades were very much development years with Eric searching for his voice with the Yardbirds, John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, Cream, Blind Faith, Derek and the Dominos, all legendary bands that are revered to this day. But the next three decades would offer fans many surprises and some of his most successful and memorable music.

At the time of putting these two books together it seems that Eric will be retiring from lengthy tours and any live appearances after he reaches 70. As a music fan I hope that he will continue to make music, but equally I appreciate that he certainly deserves his retirement after providing so much pleasure to so many people over the last fifty years.

Whatever happens, I hope that these two volumes will provide the reader with new information and hopefully inspire them to look into some previously unexplored Eric Clapton music.

Volume 1

Eric Clapton, Day by Day presents Clapton’s professional life in music in a day-by-day format, giving details of which bands he joined and left, all recordings made – both released and unreleased – as well as guest appearances he made on other artists’ records, and concert tours.

Based on years of extensive research from around the globe and interviews with musicians, film directors, producers, and studio engineers, Roberty covers every detail of Clapton’s live and studio work in this detailed biography.

Volume 1 covers Clapton’s early years, offering an insight into how this artist slowly found his own musical identity. Volume 2, to be published in the fall of 2013, will continue the story, covering Clapton’s comeback after problematic years of drug and alcohol abuse, and his going on to become one of the world’s most respected and admired musicians.

With Eric Clapton’s 50th anniversary in the music business approaching in 2013, now is the perfect time for this comprehensive biography.

Volume 2 (Release Date: 10/29/13)

Volume 2 of Eric Clapton, Day by Day covers 1983 through to 2013, listing all of Clapton’s tour dates, set lists, recording sessions, and guest appearances for that period, along with quotes and narrative from engineers, producers, and musicians who were involved. Where possible, entries for recording sessions, as well as live recordings, list all accompanying musicians and the studio locations, plus the songs that were released and those that remained in the vault.

Volume 2 details major events of the last few decades, such as the ARMS shows, which saw the three Yardbirds guitarists – Eric Clapton, Jeff Beck, and Jimmy Page – onstage together for the first time since the sixties. It looks at the Cream reformation shows of 2005, with all the ups and downs associated with that reunion. In the last decade, Clapton has revisited his past on several occasions, and in 2008, he reunited with his Blind Faith band mate, Stevie Winwood. The remarkable musical chemistry between the two was obvious to fans, and the Clapton/Winwood relationship has been revived several times since. The book also covers Clapton’s well-publicized Crossroads guitar festivals, which have been well received by fans and critics. The year 2013 marks the 50th anniversary of his performing career.

Eric Clapton, Day by Day

Eric Clapton, Day by Day

The Early Years: 1963–1982
by Marc Roberty
foreword by Bobby Whitlock (Derek and the Dominos)

Website

“From day one in 1963 right up to today, Eric’s life has been full of recording and live appearances, and Marc Roberty has managed to compile it all and lay it out for everyone to read, enjoy, and be enlightened.”                          –Bobby Whitlock, from the foreword

MONTCLAIR, NJ—To celebrate the 50th year of Eric Clapton’s career as one of the most important and influential guitarists of all time, Marc Roberty, the quintessential Eric Clapton authority, has compiled every day-to-day detail of Clapton’s professional life in music into two heavily illustrated volumes.

Backbeat Books will publish the first volume, Eric Clapton, Day by Day: The Early Years: 1963–1982 ($39.99) on May 28, 2013. Drawing on years of extensive research and interviews, Roberty covers every aspect of Clapton’s recordings (released and unreleased), joining and leaving bands, live performances, concert tours, and guest appearances on other artists’ records. Even when Clapton “wasn’t doing anything,” he was busy because everyone called on him when they needed someone, and this book chronicles every activity of a very busy man.

The book includes not only every band Clapton played in, such as the Yardbirds, Cream, Derek and the Dominos, Blind Faith, and Delaney & Bonnie, but also all the cameos throughout his career, such as ones with George Harrison (recording “All Things Must Pass”), the Rolling Stones, Leon Russell, Stevie Wonder, Pete Townshend, and so many more. Making the book even more of a treat for die-hard Slowhand fans, the pages are stuffed with color photos, images of band posters, and album art.

Backbeat Books will publish the second volume, Eric Clapton, Day by Day: The Later Years: 1983–2013, in November 2013.

Marc Roberty (London) is an award-nominated author, music journalist, and music historian. Roberty’s articles have been featured in Guitarist magazine, Rolling Stone, Best (France), Mojo, The Financial Times, The Independent, and Where’s Eric! Roberty also did film and audio research for the Eric Clapton Anthology, a documentary.

May 28, 2013
9781617130526
$39.99
Hardcover
8.5″ x 11″
352 pages
Heavily illustrated
Backbeat Books, an imprint of Hal Leonard Performing Arts Publishing Group

Clapton1

Derek and the Dominos

The following is an excerpt from Eric Clapton, Day by Day: The Early Years, 1963-1982 by Marc Roberty, published by Backbeat Books, as posted by Something Else Reviews. Please visit their site to read the whole excerpt.

Ever since the demise of Cream, Eric Clapton had been searching for his musical identity. Blind Faith may have started out with good intentions, and a lot of promise, but ultimately it was doomed to failure as soon as Ginger Baker joined the band and the business side of things took over the creative side before it had much of a chance to start. They were forced to record an album and tour before they were ready to do either. The lengthy and lucrative U.S. tour was the final nail in the coffin for the band, as they resorted to playing crowd favorites from Traffic and Cream. Delaney & Bonnie had provided a great short-term escape for Eric, and his first solo album was the first step in finding his future musical direction and path. Although that album was more of a Delaney & Bonnie album in sound, it gave him the confidence to be a solo artist. But not quite yet, as his next project was to be a cooperative band.

Bobby Whitlock had stayed with Delaney & Bonnie after the rest of the “Friends” had left with Leon Russell to join Joe Cocker’s infamous Mad Dogs And Englishmen tour in the US. After recording “Motel Shot” with them, he, too, decided it was time to leave and consider what he should do next. His friend Steve Cropper suggested he go and see Eric Clapton and spend some time in England to clear his head. As Bobby did not have much money, Steve kindly organized a plane ticket, and Bobby flew over to London Airport in April 1970. From there he took a taxi to Eric’s home in the Surrey countryside. He already knew it well, of course, as he had stayed there the previous November when Delaney & Bonnie and Friends were residing there while recording and touring with Eric.

Eric was surprised to see Bobby, but happy at the same time, as they could play music and generally hang out and have fun. Within weeks, they were starting to write songs together, but when Eric realized that Bobby would have to head off home, he asked him to stay and help him get a band together. The first step was to go and see Robert Stigwood and put him on the payroll as the first member. The band was initially being formed to promote Eric’s first solo album, which was due for release in August, but this would also be a fully functioning band that would tour and record new material. After some discussions, it was decided to get Jim Keltner on drums and Carl Radle on bass, along with Bobby Keys and Jim Price on horns. Everyone was available to come over at short notice except Jim Keltner, who was working on Gabor Szabo’s Magical Connection album for Blue Thumb, and would not be able to make it over until July. Jim Gordon, another ex-member of Delaney & Bonnie’s Friends, heard about the gig from Carl Radle and flew over with Carl and straight into a session with Eric and Bobby for PP Arnold. As he was there and ready, he was offered the job instead of Keltner…

Keep reading this excerpt on Something Else Reviews!

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Eric Clapton, Day by Day presents Clapton’s professional life in music in a day-by-day format, giving details of which bands he joined and left, all recordings made – both released and unreleased – as well as guest appearances he made on other artists’ records, and concert tours. Volume 1 covers Clapton’s early years, offering an insight into how this artist slowly found his own musical identity. Volume 2, to be published in the fall of 2013, will continue the story, covering Clapton’s comeback after problematic years of drug and alcohol abuse, and his going on to become one of the world’s most respected and admired musicians.