Eric Patrick Clapton
March 30, 1945
Ripley, Surrey, England
"It's been very important throughout my career that I've met all the guys I've copied, because at each stage they've said, 'Don't play like me, play like you.'"
Significant Facts:41 albums, 30 singles as a solo artist
Self-taught guitarist, joined first band at age 17
Heavily influenced by blues, credits guitar ability to copying B.B. King
Nicknamed "Slowhand" by the Yardbirds' manager because of his laid back guitar style
Before beginning his legendary career as a solo artist in 1970, Clapton had stints with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers, The Yardbirds, Cream
, Blind Faith, and Delaney & Bonnie.
More than half of his solo albums have reached the Top 20 in the U.S., three of them going to #1. He was featured on The Beatles' White Album and co-wrote with George Harrison, whose wife, Pattie left him for Clapton.
Eric Clapton with Delaney & Bonnie
After the breakup of Cream, Clapton wanted to get out of the spotlight, and signed on as a sideman for Delaney and Bonnie and Friends. Delaney Bramlett's encouragement led to this, Clapton's first solo album, released in 1970.