Eric Clapton Biography

the most successful guitarist of all time

Biography

Watch These Videos

Interview, music and concert videos


Eric Clapton

As well as being in bands like Derek & The Dominos, The Yardbirds, and Cream, Clapton has successfully played sessions for more stars than any other guitar player ever lived.

His guitar has brought him to studios and stages with legends such as Bob Dylan, The Beatles, B.B King, SRV, Freddie King, and Sheryl Crow who wrote My Favourite Mistake about Clapton.

Clapton’s long career has earned him not one, not two but three inductions into the Rock and Roll Hall Of Fame (as a solo artist with Yardbirds and Cream). No other musician has achieved this.


The Eric Clapton Unplugged album

The album Eric Clapton Unplugged, as a whole, is highly recommended. It contains a wealth of blues classics played by one of the best guitar players of all time.

Songs like Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out, Malted Milk, Layla, Old Love and Walking Blues clearly demonstrates Clapton’s blues mastery.

As well as the blues classics, we also find the acoustic version of Layla and the gorgeous Tears In Heaven on this fantastic live album.


Tears In Heaven background

The story of Tears In Heaven is a tragic one.

Eric Clapton’s four-year-old son fell out of a window at his mother’s penthouse flat in New York City as she was having builders around.

Will Jennings who co-wrote the song was at first very reluctant to be a part of such a personal song.

What part did Will Jennings add? The m8 with the genius key change!

Since its release, Tears In Heaven has achieved huge success and is covered by many artists and sung in most bars, weddings, funerals, and clubs around the world.

Rolling Stones magazine rated Tears In Heaven as one of the best songs of all time.


Guitar Lessons


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 1 (Free Preview)

Before we can start playing Sunshine Of Your Love, we have to ensure we can play the minor blues scale in Dm and Gm.

We do this as the riff is based on this very scale. First, we play the scale, then the riff.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 1.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 2

Let’s find 10 ways to play this riff all over the neck in D and G.

By adding more notes to fatten it up and expression techniques like slides and bends, we can make this sound more or less bluesy.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 2.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 3

By borrowing a dom7#9 from Spanky Wilson’s cover version, we can further expand on the main riff.

We also work on how to play the turnaround in a few ways.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 3.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 4

In this step, we play the complete song with a singer. There is a 4 page, complete TAB transcription available.

However, it would be a better idea to look at the fret board and find the riff in an improvised way, than to focus on the TAB.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 4.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 5

It’s time to summon the spirit of Eric Clapton and play his solo in eleven individual licks.

Our mental coach is Mr. Miyagi who will assist us with the wax on, wax off slow-motion learning technique. You can do this!

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 5.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 6

The tempo is now fast enough so we can add a rhythm guitar and play longer phrases from the solo.

If you have prepared well, playing these five examples will be possible.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 6.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 7

You’re almost there when you completed this step as we now play the solo in its entirety.

First in two halves at 96 BPM, then the full solo at 108.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 7.


Sunshine Of Your Love – Step 8

In this final step, you play with me and the singer again, although now you play the solo.

For a 2nd rhythm guitar part, don’t play the riff in the same area as me and keep changing it!

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love step 8.


Related Pages


Chords

I Shot The SheriffSpytunes one guitar arrangement of I Shot The Sheriff is inspired by the original Bob Marley recording but also by Eric Clapton’s version.

The verse chord progression is simple and very Aeolian using the IVmaj7 and the IIIm7 to point back to VI.

Go to I Shot The Sheriff chords.


Lyrics

I Shot The SheriffI shot the sheriff
But I didn’t shoot no deputy, oh no! Oh!
I shot the sheriff
But I didn’t shoot no deputy, ooh, ooh, oo-ooh

Go to I Shot The Sheriff lyrics.


Chords and Guitar Lessons

This one guitar version of Sunshine Of Your Love is a combination of Creams original and a Spanky Wilson cover.

Using the main riff as a starting point over a blues progression, the I chord has sometimes been extended to a dom7#9.

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love chords and guitar lessons.


Lyrics

Sunshine Of Your LoveIt’s getting near dawn
When lights close their tired eyes
I’ll soon be with you my love
To give you my dawn surprise

Go to Sunshine Of Your Love lyrics.


Chords

Tears In HeavenMost people recognize Clapton’s live version of the legendary live Unplugged Album, rather than the official album version. Our version is based on the live recording.

Tears In Heaven has a genius chord progression that uses small variations and slash chords to keep the harmonic interest on top.

Go to Tears In Heaven chords.


Lyrics

Tears In HeavenWould you know my name
If I saw you in heaven?
Would you feel the same
If I saw you in heaven?

Go to Tears In Heaven lyrics.


Monthly Subscription

A monthly subscription with access to all acoustic and electric step by step lessons, each one designed to bring your guitar playing skills to the next level.

Including detailed, but bite-sized explanations on how the music theory of each song is applied to the neck.

Go to Monthly subscription.