See Eric Clapton's return to the Royal Albert Hall

Eric Clapton
(Image credit: Harry Herd/Redfern)

Eric Clapton and London's Royal Albert Hall have a lot of history – he's played there over 200 times – so his return was always going to be a memorable event. And so it proved for his two-night stand on 7 and 8 May. 

Slowhand honoured Procol Harem's Gary Brooker by opening with a rousing Lead Me To The Water – from the late musician's debut solo album. 

Of course there were plenty of his own familiar classics from his solo discography and Cream too. Layla was even aired twice – one in the sets' acoustic segment alongside Tears In Heaven, Charlie Chaplin's Smile and his much-loved Jimmie Cox cover of Nobody Loves You When You're Down And Out – and again in electric form at the end of the main set.

Clapton's love of Robert Johnson came to the fore with renditions of Cross Road Blues and Little Queen Of Spades and the encore saw him honour Joe Cocker with his take on High Time We Went with keyboardist Paul Carrack on lead vocals.

Clapton was joined by other longtime band members Nathan East on bass, Doyale Bramhall II on guitar, Sonny Emory on drums and Chris Stainton on keys. Andy Fairweather Low also joined for the acoustic segment. 


• Lead Me To The Water (Gary Brooker cover)

• Key to the Highway (Charles Segar cover)

• Pilgrim

• River of Tears

• I Shot the Sheriff (The Wailers cover)

• White Room (Cream song)

Acoustic set

• Heart of a Child (with Andy Fairweather Low)

• Nobody Knows You When You're Down and Out (Jimmy Cox cover) (with Andy Fairweather Low)

• Smile (Charlie Chaplin cover)

• Layla (Derek and the Dominos song) (with Andy Fairweather Low)

• Tears in Heaven (with Andy Fairweather Low)

Electric set

• Badge (Cream song)

• Wonderful Tonight

• Cross Road Blues (Robert Johnson cover)

• Little Queen of Spades (Robert Johnson cover)

• Layla (Derek and the Dominos song)


• High Time We Went (Joe Cocker cover)

Rob Laing
Guitars Editor, MusicRadar

I'm the Guitars Editor for MusicRadar, handling news, reviews, features, tuition, advice for the strings side of the site and everything in between. Before MusicRadar I worked on guitar magazines for 15 years, including Editor of Total Guitar in the UK. When I'm not rejigging pedalboards I'm usually thinking about rejigging pedalboards.