January 29, 2010

Derek and the Dominos

Dan here again. I was looking back in the archives of Layla's blog and found that she really has never written about the album that her namesake or her blog badge comes from. I will now try to enlighten you with my knowledge and research. The album cover really is a beautiful piece of art.

The album "Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs" by Derek and the Dominos (1970) has arguably been considered Eric Claptons greatest musical achievement. A return to the Crossroads blues roots Eric so longed for. The bands name was chosen specifically because he wanted to hide from his celebrity status. He just wanted to create music without all the hype that constantly surrounded him. Remember he was considered God by some at the time. What a tough name to live up to.

This endeavor came shortly after his stint with Delaney and Bonnie and Friends. Former bandmates Bobby Whitlock, Carl Radle and Jim Gordon joined him in the band. Eric was the main song writer, but it really was a group effort with Bobby Whitlock providing help on many of the songs and arrangements. Most of the material on this album was written for Pattie Boyd, George Harrison's wife, who Eric desperately wanted to make his own. The relationship was not officially to be for another 4 years though. A few cover songs were also included. Incidently, a cover of Jimi Hendrix's "Little Wing" was also included in memoriam of Jimi who had died a week after its recording.

Another contributor to the band was none other than Duane Allman who was scouted by Eric after hearing The Allman Brothers were playing nearby. It is said that Duane froze when Eric showed up at the concert. After the show they hung out all night long trading licks and swapping guitars. Eric would later say that Duane "was the musical brother he never had, but wished he did."

Derek and the Dominos only produced this one, four sided, studio recording and then also a live recording "In Concert" (1973). Later in the 90's they remastered the Layla studio recordings for its 20th anniversary and also produced a live concert album from their concerts at The Fillmore East in the 70's.

The most famous song, of course, is Layla, with Duane stepping up big time with his slide guitar. Drummer Jim Gordon's piano solo (Jim was working on a solo album when Eric heard him playing the now famous piano interlude and insisted they include it) rounded out the package and the rest as they say is history. When you really listen to the intensity of those Eric lyrics and the beautiful instruments, you can almost feel the desire he must have had for Pattie. What a love story they had!

The album was originally a flop out of the gate, but when the song Layla was released as a single in 1972, it took off and became a smash hit. Clapton acoustically reworked the song in 1992, which became another smash hit for him. I personally enjoy the acoustic version better than the original, but of course we do miss Duane's slide. I am including that version now. I hope you enjoy!

eric clapton - layla - live

mouse MySpace Video



Anonymous said...

Much better blog with the addition of the three contributers. I believe the new three should totally take over this blog.

I rarely look at the other blogs by the original author. To much whining about the personal life and family.

Barbara aka Layla said...

Well Anon.

I'm glad you feel free to say hurtful things without using your real name.

If you don't like my blogs don't read them. My blogs are ABOUT my personal life and my blogs are not meant for people that have no compassion or empathy for others so thanks for not reading them.

Barbara aka Layla said...

P.S. And you're right, the others are adding a lot here, I love it!

Great post, Dan.

Dan said...

Anonymous: I would much rather read anything by Layla than hear from you. Not sure what you think you have to offer by saying what you said other than just being a jerk.

classicrockforthesoul said...

Hear, hear Layla & Dan!

Btw, lovelovelove the Derek & the Dominos' album :)

Bond said...

Slimy beasts who do not have the balls to list their name have no right to criticize...go away Anon - don't come back.

This is one of those albums that would journey with me to an island if I had only five to pick...

Bell Bottom Blues is a masterpiece.

Anyone who knows me knows of my total love for anything Duane...We can only dream of the musician he would have become if tragedy had not fallen him

The musicians on this album are some of the best in rock and roll IMHO

Whitlock, Radle and Gordon are masters

I have tickets to finally see Mr. Clapton for the first time in a month or so... I am stoked...and with him will be Roger Daltry.

Dan said...

Bond: I totally agree. Rolling Stone magazine has it ranked at #115 on their list of the top 500 greatest albums. I would rank it much higher, possibly in my top 25 Clapton found in these bandmates a place where he could play the music he always wanted to play. I think 461 Ocean Blvd. was an extension of what was started in Derek and the Dominos. Another of my top 25 albums.

Barbara aka Layla said...

Thanks friends, for defending me.

Dan, this is one of my all time favorite albums (i bet you could have guessed!)

Bond! HOW COOL that you are seeing him soon! Can't wait to hear about it. I love the music Duane left behind for us...

Sean Coleman said...

This is the first time that I have seen a negative comment in this forum. It's a shame that some people use the anonymity of the internet to attack others.

Sadder still that it is completely unwarranted.

Barb, you are sending a positive message to others that may be going through the same thing with a family member.

Very dignified response as well, though I wouldn't expect anything less :)

Charlie said...

Anon - Cut the Crap! Nobody wants to hear from you but if we do hear from you again next please sign your name.

Barbara aka Layla said...

Thanks, Sean and Charlie. I feel protected from the "meanies".

The Mad Hatter said...


Well, I think you've already read what I think of this album. I'll leave it at that, because I'm civil-like regarding others opinions on music. ;)

That said, I'm not very civil when it comes to certain others. It's a good thing Google spells anonymous out for these people when they have spelling problemers. They usually like to feed their envy and failure into every part of their lives. I have an idea, next time you completely anonymize yourself behind your cowardice and want to insult someone, why don't you give us something else to work with besides your obvious idiocy. You must be a real winner in real life to take a shot at someone as nice as Barbara, considering that she's probably done more for the world than you ever will in your little miserable life. Go listen to emo and donate to the I'm-a-loser fund.


On a good note, Them Crooked Vultures seem to be coming around again -- check them out if you can. I've been busier than hell in a bad way, but I'm still trying to rock on.

Dan said...

Mad: I have read your review and of course, I politely disagree with it. Sounds more like a dislike for anything Eric, than a dislike of Derek and the Dominos. Of course, as adults we can agree to disagree, cant we? At least you gave it a C-.
Thanks for stickin up for Barbara.

Bond said...

OK, I had to go read the review by Mad Hatter and I agree with Dan, that it appears anything Clapton would not be well praised by you Sir.

As has been said, I respect your opinion, though I disagree. I can say, that your praise of Duane was appreciated by me, the ultimate Duane fan.

Barb...you just know I will be writing about it the following Monday, March 8th on my Musical Monday On The Couch edition!

Perplexio said...

Anon: To be a bit more blunt... If you can't say something nice, then stfu and get lost!

Everyone else: My apologies but I can't stand s--t like that! Great review Dan! Keep it up and I'll certainly keep reading!

Anonymous said...

thanks for the info on the band, love the back stories..

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