On this day in 1963 a promising young guitarist replaced Tony Topham in the Yardbirds. Of course that guitarist was Eric Clapton (Known as God to his graffiti writing friends). He was 17 when he left his first band The Roosters to join them.
Reassuringly for us mere mortals, EC found learning the guitar difficult but he stayed with it as fascinated with the blues. The blues was his first love and it was the reason he would leave The Yardbirds a couple of years later. The Yardbirds were moving in a pop direction that did not sit well with him.
From the Yardbirds EC joined John Mayall and released one of the seminal records of the 60s the so called Beano album. From there he formed Cream and then an amazing solo carer with amazing highs and incredible lows (I still have not forgiven him for 461 Ocean Boulevard….)
As a bit of a side note, the guitarist he recommended to the band to take over from him in the Yardbirds was Jimmy Page, but he did not want to stop his successful career as a session player. Later, of course Jimmy was in the New Yardbirds a band that quickly changed their name to Led Zep.
This is EC playing second fiddle to one of the GREAT blues guitarists Buddy Guy.
And this is the last straw as far as EC was concerned, The Yardbirds with “For Your Love”. It’s jeff Beck in this performance as EC had already left the Building.
And THIS is EC with John Mayall in 1966. Boy, did he make the right decision!