Fans of The Rolling Stones will no doubt recognize this syncopated blues shuffle as Prodigal Son from the album Beggars Banquet. Fact is, it began its life as That's No Way To Get Along and was written by American blues guitarist and singer Robert Wilkins. Wilkins later became an ordained minister and changed the title and some of the 'unholy' lyrics to the song.
Clapton eschews the bare-bones acoustic treatment that the Stones employed and returns it to its secular roots. His large band, complete with horns and the stellar Walt Richmond tickling the ivories, gives the number a laid-back yet righteous groove, propelled by the inimitable talents of drummer Jim Keltner. When you look up 'feel' or the expression 'in the pocket,' this man's name surely must appear.
Clapton and JJ Cale trade off on vocals and guitar duties, but both men are more than happy to step aside and let Doyle Bramhall II take not one but two solos. The man knows how to build tension and dynamics. For the most part, his touch is light, his fingers just teasing the strings with soulful bends; at the end, however, he lays it all out and kicks up some distorted screeches and squeals. Peaking too early doesn't get the job done.