#168 Eric Clapton – Journeyman (1989)

Eric Clapton had long been a legend when “Journeyman” was released in 1989. But most of the 1980’s had seen his music on a downward cycle and not received as w
blues arrangement than either Carl Perkins or Elvis did. Probably the best shot of blues on this disc is a blistering cover of Bo Diddley’s “Before You Accuse Me” where Clapton and Robert Cray trade guitar licks on a song that originally appeared on Diddley’s 1957 debut album. He also covers George Harrison’s “Run So Far”, a tip of the cap to one of Clapton’s best friends. One of the best offerings on this disc & my persell commercially. “Journeyman” was a re-introduction of the guitar god to a new generation of fans. The sound of this record is a more synthesised 1980’s sound, you would never confuse it with his work with the Yardbirds, Cream or Derek & the Domino’s. In fact the first song on this disc “Pretending” has a brief intro of a blues piano tease that quickly turns into Clapton’s 80’s brand of rock. That’s not to say there isn’t any blues on this disc. A beautiful slow blues cover of Ray Charles “Hard Times” gives Clapton a chance to riff his stratocaster. He offers a version of “Hound Dog” that stays to true to the original
onal favorite is “Running On Faith” with a slow beat in the “Wonderful Tonight” Clapton style. The 2 big singles off this album are where you really hear that ’80’s style that I mentioned earlier. The same sound found in earlier 1980’s releases like Forever Man, She’s Waiting, It’s In The Way That You Use It,etc. Both “Pretending” & “Bad Love” share that same style. Both are good songs and easy on the ears, but are far from the highlights of this package. Interestingly enough “Bad Love” would be the only song on the album which Clapton wrote (actually he co-wrote it with Foreigners Mick Jones). Clapton enlisted many people beyond just a stable of studio musicians to help with this record. The list included Phil Collins, Robert Cray, George Harrison, David Sanborn, Daryl Hall & Chaka Khan. Although this album was not a huge smash it was a critical and commercial success and help set the table for Clapton to vault back to his throne of elder statesman of rock guitar in the early 1990’s when his Unplugged disc would win him a Grammy for “Album Of The Year”.other Eric Clapton on this blog:

#110 Eric Clapton – Slowhand (1977)

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