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4.2 out of 5 stars
EC Was Here
Format: Audio CD|Change
Price:£5.62+ Free shipping with Amazon Prime

on 3 June 2012
This is a superb live set compiled from US and UK tours in 1974 and '75 - and although they quickly followed the release of two solo studio albums (461 Ocean Boulevard and There's One In Every Crowd), there are no numbers included from either. Instead, we have two Blind Faith originals and four (or five - more on that later) of Eric's blues favourites. Most performances are from Long Beach Arena, California, with the enthusiastic American audience much in evidence - adding to the atmosphere, which is noticeably different from London's much smaller Hammersmith Odeon.

E.C. Was Here is book-ended (if that can be said of an album) by two of Eric's finest live recordings, "Have You Ever Loved A Woman" - which features breathtaking interplay and some serious sparring with second guitarist George Terry which Eric clearly enjoyed - and a rousing rendition of "Further On Up The Road". If heavy drinking had already replaced his heavy drugging (and is apparent in some of EC's vocals), it certainly didn't hinder his playing. In between are Blind Faith's "Presence Of The Lord", sung as a powerful duet between Clapton and Yvonne Elliman - played with lots of space at a slow tempo (until the instrumental mid-section) and the acoustic "Can't Find My Way Home", sung beautifully by Yvonne Elliman and EC. "Ramblin' On My Mind" is another highlight, which sees Eric calling out key changes throughout his extended solo - the band reacting on cue, like a big old classic car changing up through the gears ... brilliant stuff!

That only leaves mention of "Driftin' Blues", which had closed the original LP's side 1 - a delightful acoustic blues which, pre "Unplugged", was a real treat as 'acoustic Eric' was relatively rare on record. Intriguingly, the vinyl version had faded out just as George Terry took over on electric lead guitar, leaving the listener to wonder what happened next. The answer is here, as Terry's solo allowed Clapton to swap his acoustic for electric guitar before embarking on an extended slide workout. But he hadn't finished yet; the number then leads into another version of "Ramblin' On My Mind". This isn't revealed on the track listing - you have to refer to "Crossroads 2 (live in the seventies)" to see this described more accurately - and, frankly, it would look odd to have two versions of the same song listed on one live album. Despite the subterfuge, however, it does make for a slightly confused (if interesting) listen for the same reason - although to have a live fade midway through the CD would have seemed equally odd. You may well decide that Eric can ramble on as much as he likes (and who am I to argue?) but I'll always prefer the LP to the CD. The original LP version was skilfully edited by producer Tom Dowd and the Crossroads live box set includes the actual full-length versions of "Presence Of The Lord" and "Rambling On My Mind/Have You Ever Loved A Woman" - even longer than on EC Was Here although they are only stated to be different mixes - "Presence Of The Lord" is over two minutes longer (8:48 / 6:40) and "Rambling On My Mind/Have You Ever Loved A Woman" is 8:16 / 7:38). But sometimes less is more ...
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TOP 500 REVIEWERon 19 September 2013
'EC Was Here' seems to be very much a mid 70's stop -gap album, like many similar efforts from bands of the period wanting to fulfil a recording obligation or cover over a creative dry patch. No original material is offered but the band and Clapton perform with passion and an enviable degree of understated virtuosity that makes this live set a great disc your collection.

Aimed at the die hard fans that yearned for a return to the fiery virtuosity of his Mayall and Domino days, the album does a great job at emphasizing Eric's guitar skills without underselling his new found soulful vocalizing. From this point on Clapton's discs tended to major on songs and relaxed rhythms rather then too much freneticism. Even so, when you have recording that features performances like 'Have You Ever Loved A Woman', 'Presence of the Lord' and the 'Can't Find My Way Home' savour , you know that you have an album that rivals some of Clapton's best output.

Superb playing and song choice coupled with an excellent re-mastering make this album an easy recommendation. To award 5 stars I would have liked some sleevenotes and perhaps a bonus track or two-or am I being greedy?

PS: Guitarists should listen out to the blistering 'Further On Up The Road'. Its a fret melter!
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on 5 May 2004
Following 461 Ocean Boulevard and There's one in every crowd, this live album was relased, 6 tracks covering the 1974 and 1975 tour. The 2 previous albums, although fantastic, lacked what many fans wanted.......searing guitar solos.
Kicking off with "Have you ever loved a woman", the solo's and interplay between EC and George Terry are worth the price of the CD alone, the CD gets better and better. Two Blind Faith songs are featured here, "Presence of the lord", which in think is a more emotional version than the original, the wah wah solo is breathtaking. "Can't find my way home" is a duet between EC and Yvonne Elliman, and features a beautiful acoustic solo.
The CD benefits from having "Drifting blues" restored to the full 11 minute version, starting out acoustic, and features blistering guitar work, including a great slide solo.
The album ends with probably the best version of "Further on up the road", certainily more superior than the version on "Just one night."
The album finishes as it started, on a high.
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on 17 October 2017
I've got this thing about the blues
I've got this thing about slow hand
I prefer the early more rockier stuff
but it slots in my collection nicely.
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on 17 December 2015
One of Eric Clapton's best "live" concert albums. Blues at it's best and very relaxing to listen to. Long versions of his most popular blues, which slip easily into pleasing, rhythmic "grooves". I loved the seemingly impromptu version of "Ramblin' On my Mind" - you can hear very clearly Eric shouting 5 key changes to the band, but it' works beautifully. K. McEvoy
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on 31 July 2013
Clapton and the blues were made for each other. On stage in the Sixties he was magic. But this is a record cut in the Seventies when drink and drugs were claiming too much of his time and energy. There's no doubt it affected his playing. By this stage George Terry was also in the band and his guitar solos relieved the pressure on Clapton to always deliver. Eric had also taken to not always obliging fans' requests to play 'Layla'. Curmudgeon! Despite all this it's a solid record that has some very good moments and one that Clapton-ites should own. .
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on 16 April 2017
Excellent relaxing live sessions which are perfect for relaxing in the back yard with a cold beer!
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on 13 August 2017
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on 10 November 2016
Okay, but not as inspirational as his earlier days.
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on 30 August 2014
One of the greatest live albums of the seventies capturing the atmosphere of Clapton live and wonder no more as to why he was called God. Only Hendrix and Rory Gallagher could be slotted in the same pigeon hole as Clapton. Buy it, play it and close your eyes and imagine you're there. Brilliant.
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