For the middle part of his performance, he sat down for a string of songs that included “Driftin’,” “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down and Out,” “River Runs Deep” and “When Somebody Thinks You’re Wonderful,” the latter two culled from his current album, Clapton, released this past September. “Same Old Blues” and “Layla,” the latter performed quietly in an almost offhand manner, also followed.
Back to standing, he tore into “Badge,” which he wrote with George Harrison, followed by “Wonderful Tonight,” “Before You Accuse Me,” “Little Queen of Spades,” and “Cocaine.” After leaving the stage for several minutes, he returned, smiling shyly, for the encore and charged through “Crossroads.”
Eric Clapton’s singular talent on the guitar is a given, but his voice also was strong throughout the evening, and he received solid support from his band, with both Chris Stainton on piano and Tim Carmon on organ particularly standing out. Clapton is an experienced performer, and he was willing to oblige the crowd by offering a fair number of his most well-known tunes, but it seemed that he was happiest, and most engaged, when he could lose himself in his profound love of the blues, playing the vintage songs that he had learned from old recordings.