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Review: Eric Clapton & His Band, LG Arena, Birmingham

Birmingham | Entertainment | Published:

Moody blues and vintage rock filled the LG Arena last night when Eric Clapton, his six band members and two backing vocalists served up a two-hour-plus menu for the sit-down crowd.

Opening with Hello Old Friend, the setlist was a sumptuous mix of Clapton and Cream classics from across the decades.

Highlights were the beautifully melodic My Father's Eyes aided by heavy keyboards and skilful slide guitar, and Come Rain or Come Shine - just one of the evening's tracks taken on by Mike and the Mechanics frontman Paul Carrack on vocals and keys.

Clapton's moody acoustic version of Layla was a real crowd pleaser, along with the familiar Wonderful Tonight, Cocaine, I Shot the Sheriff, and Lay Down Sally.

This was a no-frills concert - no backdrop video or lighting effects to distract die-hard fans, just guitar maestro Clapton in jeans and a dark grey shirt, with two large screens giving the audience a masterclass in Fender Stratocaster genius.

An rousing High Time We Went saw Clapton and Carrack duet for the encore.

Some might say the veteran comes across as cold, with hardly a word spoken to the packed arena, and no audience interaction - but it was nevertheless a privilege to watch this legend at work.

Debbie Bennett

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