Music legend and guitar God Eric Clapton is back with his twenty-third solo album titled “I Still Do”. The new album was officially released today (May 20) through the independent Bushbranch Records/Surfdog Records label. “I Still Do” is produced by the famous Glyn Johns who is also responsible for Clapton’s iconic “Slowhand” album which became an international success and is certified 3x-platinum by the RIAA.
“This was a long and overdue opportunity to work with Glyn Johns again, and also, incidentally, the fortieth anniversary of ‘Slowhand’!” said Eric Clapton in a statement announcing the upcoming release of I Still Do.
The 12 track record features new original songs, written by Eric Clapton and cover versions of classic songs by artists such as Robert Johnson and Bob Dylan. “I Still Do” follows up to Clapton’s hit album “The Breeze: An Appreciation of JJ Cale” released in 2014 and the commercially successful compilation album “Forever Man” and concert film and live album “Slowhand at 70 – Live at the Royal Albert Hall” released in 2015.
The distinguishable Eric Clapton artwork was painted by Sir Peter Blake who has previously worked with Clapton on his live album “24 Nights” (1991) and is famous for co-designing The Beatles’ “Sgt. Pepper’s Lonely Hearts Club Band” album art.
I STILL DO
Released: May 20, 2016
Recorded: British Grove Studios
Genre: Blues, Rock, Pop Rock
Producer(s): Glyn Johns
Alabama Woman Blues
Can’t Let You Do It
I Will Be There
Catch The Blues
Little Man, You’ve Had a Busy Day
Stones In My Passway
I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine
I’ll Be Alright
I’ll Be Seeing You
-Limited Edition “Denim Box” version – Bonus Tracks
The ultimate goal of “I Still Do” is to provide variety and we can clearly see it in the smart selection of songs and the wide range of artists he chose to cover, including folk icon Bob Dylan (I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine) and blues singer Leroy Carr (Alabama Woman Blues). In addition, original compositions (Spiral, Catch the Blues) also make an appearance and add the final ingredient to the long-awaited blues blast called “I Still Do”.
The result is a consistently delightful, although quite expected, collection from Clapton that features his stimulating guitar solos, raspy vocal delivery and a dozen other credited musicians who play alongside him. Positively laidback, the album definitely grabs your attention with its bluesy easy-going and breezy aura that creates the perfect mood. The songs are rather homogeneous and once again perfectly aligned with Eric Clapton’s standards and practices of reviving and exploring old ways and meanings of music.
Some of the album’s finest moments of the record include the carelessly improvised “Spiral” on which he sings, “You don’t know how much this means to have this music in me…I just keep playing these blues’…hoping that I don’t lose”. In the gentle lullaby “Little Man, You’ve Had A Busy Day” we can enjoy his husky and calming vocal delivery that can’t but warm our hearts. The more upbeat spirit of the album is captured in Robert Johnson’s “Stones in My Passway” and JJ Cale’s “Somebody’s Knocking” on which Clapton handsomely portrays his confidence in playing and singing the blues. The dozy “I Will Be There” and “I’ll Be Alright” may slow down the enthusiasm of some people; however the album wraps things up in a very classy and fanciful, though a but nostalgic way. “I’ll Be Seeing You” portrays Clapton’s passion for jazz music and captivates with its dreamy lyrics.
“I Still Do” is a reflection of Clapton’s current, assured and calmed spirit – the days of chasing trends, looking for new ways to reach the public and focus on making smashing hit albums are over. At this point in his career, he is finally ready to do his own music in his own way. He sounds confident, genuine and most importantly he is finally comfortable in his own skin. “I Still Do” is definitely a reason enough to celebrate and acknowledge the dying breed of musicians like Eric Clapton who do everything with style and class. Thank you for being 71 and still creating such beautiful music, Eric!
“Can’t Let You Do It” (Official Lyric Video)