John Mayall was the Macclesfield lad who would become the elder statesman of the British Blues. He was the founder and leader of a band with the ultimate revolving door policy for its members, they were known as The Blues Breakers. Much has been written about some of the band members who have cut their cloth under Mayall, to this very day fans are still arguing as to who was the greatest guitarist to play with The Blues Breakers.
After successfully recording his debut with his live LP, John Mayall Plays John Mayall released in 1965, Mayall embarked on a studio album. John McVie on Bass and Hughie Flint on drums maintained their roles from that first LP, however a new guitarist was enlisted to replace the departing Roger Dean. Disenfranchised with the pop direction his band was going in, Eric Clapton left The Yardbirds and found a Blues haven under the wings of John Mayall, joining the band in 1965 to become one of the many greats to play in The Blues Breakers line-up
In 1966, The Blues Breakers with Eric Clapton was released on the Decca Record Label. And to be honest, everything you think this album should be, it truly is. Contained within are some of the finest original and covered Blues numbers ever to be produced from Britain. But one thing is for sure, Clapton, or "God" as he was known at this time in history, most definitely imposed his style all over this record to wonderous effects.
The genius though of this record is it simplicity and the lack of over production. On listening to this record, you are instantly taken to a smoky London basement where this band is performing these numbers on a stage just for you. Credit must go to the producer Mike Vernon for the natural feel of this record.
Clapton a couple of months after this release would leave The Blues Breakers, and Mayall would get his hands on yet another guitar wonder kid, Peter Green. But that year spent playing the clubs with Mayall, left Clapton with the impotence to achieve anything he wanted, and that he certainly did do with Cream.
Originally twelve tracks, subsequent reissues have now stretched this record to twenty-four songs, all of which presents an absolute feast of British Blues from a group of musicians at the top of their game. There is really no danger of you playing this record and feeling disappointed, a proper treat.