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Eric Clapton, ‘Looking at the Rain’ – Song Review

Eric Clapton
Universal Music Group

We’re coming up on the Dec. 18 release date of the 35th Anniversary Edition of Eric Clapton‘s 1977 album, ‘Slowhand.’ There are five configurations to choose from, depending on how much you love the album; however, all of them feature four previously unreleased songs. One of them, ‘Looking at the Rain,’ has just been released.

The cut is a cover of a Gordon Lightfoot song that was originally released on the Canadian troubadour’s 1972 album, ‘Don Quixote.’ Clapton cut this version on May 6, 1977, which was early in the ‘Slowhand’ sessions.

Opening with some gentle acoustic picking, ‘Looking at the Rain’ soon adds some coloring with an electric guitar and Dick Sims’ swirling keyboards, as Jamie Oldaker does some nice brush work on the drums. Clapton even sounds a bit like Lightfoot in a few spots, putting a bit more rasp in his voice than usual, particularly on the bridge.

Although it’s a lovely version of the song and worthy of the rest of ‘Slowhand,’ it’s possible Clapton chose to leave it off because it doesn’t show off his guitar playing on an album that contained such workouts as ‘Lay Down Sally,’ ‘Cocaine’ and ‘The Core.’ And as for ballads, it already had ‘Wonderful Tonight,’ and there was no way it was going to replace that.

Listen to Eric Clapton, ‘Looking at the Rain’

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