Produced on March 30, 1945, in Surrey, England, this musician is rated among the finest rock and roll guitarists ever, with tunes like “Layla,” “Crossroads” and “Wonderful Tonight.”
Clapton’s mom, Patricia Molly Clapton, was just 16 years old during the time of his arrival; his dad, Edward Walter Fryer, was a 24-year old Canadian soldier stationed in Great Britain during the Second World War. Fryer returned to Canada, where he was already married to some other girl, before Clapton’s arrival.
A single teen mom, Patricia Clapton was unprepared to raise a kid on her own, so her mom and stepfather, Rose and Jack Clapp, raised Clapton as their very own. Although they never officially adopted him, Clapton grew up underneath the belief that his grandparents were his parents and that his mom was his older sister. Clapton’s last name comes from his grandpa, Patricia’s father, Reginald Cecil Clapton.
Eric Clapton grew up in an extremely musical family. His grandma proved to be a proficient pianist, and his mom and uncle both loved listening to big band music. As it happens, Clapton’s absent dad was additionally a gifted pianist who’d played in a number of dance bands while stationed in Surrey. Round the age of 8, Clapton found the world-shattering truth the individuals he believed were his parents were really his grandparents and the girl he considered his older sister was in fact his mom.
The youthful Clapton, until then an excellent pupil and well-liked boy, grew sullen and saved and lost all motivation to do his schoolwork. I saw a receding chin as well as a broken nose and that I believed my life is over.” Clapton failed the significant 11 plus tests that determine entry to secondary school. Nevertheless, he revealed a high aptitude for art, so in the age of 13 he registered in the artwork division of the Holyfield Road School.
By that point, 1958, rock and roll had burst onto the British music landscape; for his 13th birthday, Clapton asked to get a guitar. He received a low-cost German-made Hoyer, and finding the steel-stringed guitar hard and distressing to play, he soon set it aside. In the age of 16, he got approval to the Kingston College of Art on a one-year probation; it was there, surrounded by teens with musical tastes much like his own, that Clapton actually took to the instrument. Clapton was particularly taken with all the blues guitar played by musicians like Robert Johnson, Muddy Waters and Alexis Korner. The latter inspired Clapton to purchase his first electric guitar — still a comparative rarity in England.
It was also at Kingston that Clapton found something that could have almost as great an effect on his life as the guitar: alcohol. He remembers the very first time he got drunk, in the age of 16, he woke up alone in the woods, covered in vomit and with no money. “I could not wait to do it all again,” Clapton recalls.
He later clarified, “Even when you got to art school, it was not only a rock ‘n’ roll holiday camp. I got thrown out following annually for not doing any work. That has been a real jolt. I used to be constantly in the pub or playing the guitar.” Ended with school, in 1963 Clapton began hanging around the West End of London and attempting to break into the music business as a guitarist. That year, he joined his first group, The Roosters, however they broke up after just several months. Next he joined the pop-oriented Casey Jones and The Engineers but left the group after just a couple of weeks. Now, not yet making an income off his music, Clapton was employed as a laborer at building sites to create ends meet.
Already among the very revered guitarists to the West End pub circuit, in October 1963 Clapton received an invitation to join a group called the Yardbirds. Both young guitarists who replaced Clapton in The Yardbirds, Jimmy Page and Jeff Beck, would also go to rank on the list of finest rock guitarists ever.
After in 1965, Clapton joined the blues group John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers, another year recording an album called The Bluesbreakers with Eric Clapton, which built Clapton’s standing as among the distinguished guitarists of the age. The record, which contained songs like “What’d I Say” and “Ramblin’ on My Mind,” is widely considered among the best blues records ever.
Performing highly original takes on blues classics including “Crossroads” and “Spoonful,” along with contemporary blues tracks like “Sunshine of Your Love” and “White Room,” Clapton pushed the limits of blues guitar. On the effectiveness of three well-received records, Fresh Cream (1966), Disraeli Gears (1967) and Wheels of Fire (1968), in addition to extensive touring in America, Cream reached international celebrity status. Yet they, too, broke up after two final concerts at London’s Royal Albert Hall, mentioning clashing selves as the reason.
Following the break up of Cream, Clapton formed yet another band, Blind Faith, but the group broke up after just one record as well as a devastating American tour. A concept album about unrequited love, Clapton composed Layla to express his distressed fondness for Pattie Boyd, the wife of the Beatles’ George Harrison. The record was critically acclaimed but a commercial failure, as well as in its wake a miserable and alone Clapton deteriorated into 3 years of heroin addiction.
The record marked the start of a unusually prolific solo career during which Clapton has made famous record after remarkable record.
Despite his amazing musical productivity during these years, Clapton’s individual life stayed in woeful disarray. In 1979, five years after her divorce from his buddy George Harrison, Pattie Boyd (of “Layla” celebrity) eventually did wed Eric Clapton. Yet, by this time Clapton had just replaced his heroin addiction with alcoholism, and his drinking put a continuous stress on their relationship. He was an unfaithful husband and conceived two kids with other women in their union.
In 1991, Eric Clapton’s son Conor died when he fell from the window of his mom’s flat. The disaster took a significant cost on Eric Clapton and additionally inspired among his most delightful and heartfelt tunes, “Tears in Heaven.”
In 1987, together with assistance from the 12 steps of Alcoholics Anonymous, Clapton ultimately stop drinking , and it has stayed sober ever since. Being sober for the very first time in his mature life let Clapton to get the sort of personal well-being he’d never understood before. In 2002, he wed Melia McEnery, and collectively they have three daughters, Julie Rose, Ella Mae and Sophie.
He released his autobiography in 2007.
Yet, probably the most remarkable accomplishment of Clapton’s recent life is the fact that he’s finally went past his days of drug addiction, alcoholism and womanizing, and settled right into a happy and secure family life. “I ‘m really joyful,” he said in a recent interview. “I believe I Have found a solution to live as an outcome of all these close catastrophes, which keeps me recalling how fortunate I am and how blessed I am and just how much of a duty I need to remain the way I’m right now.”