Me And Mr. Johnson

Me And Mr. Johnson


When You Got A Good Friend 3:20
Little Queen Of Spades 4:57
They're Red Hot 3:25
Me And The Devil Blues 2:56
Traveling Riverside Blues 4:31
Last Fair Deal Gone Down 2:35
Stop Breaking Down Blues 2:30
Milkcow's Calf Blues 3:18
Kind Hearted Woman 4:06
Come On In My Kitchen 3:35
If I Had Possession Over Judgement Day 3:27
Love In Vain 4:02
32-20 Blues 2:58
Hell Hound On My Trail 3:53

Reviews

Viking Walden

Rating : 9/10

16 June 2008


I think this is a really great album. You can really hear the original recordings by Johnson in there! It might not be as good as Slowhand, but it's up there!

 

Howard Jackson

Rating : 10/10

13 March 2008


A true blues classic with a modern twist. I've had the CD now for 3 years and it does it for me every time I listen to it. Back to back with Robert J's recordings it's a great couple of hours on the ears. My grandson's ears love it too, so the blues lives on....and on.....and on......Halleluiah I just love it so!

 

Julia L. Binkley

Rating : 10/10

26 December 2006


I was very happy with what was done with this. It made me want to get up and, dance. I can't thank you enough for how you made this turn out to be. Your an excellent musician and, it sounds like an original. YOUR MY HERO!

 

Guitar Magic

Rating : 10/10

31 July 2005


Those of you who panned this CD missed the whole point.

Go back to square one and listen, if you can find them, to Johnson's originals.

It's Eric playing Johnson the way Johnson should be heard. If you're looking for something that's "flashy" or "dressed up" then you've missed the whole point.

An excellent buy for those who want to find out an important key to where the Blues evolved from

 

Debassman

Rating : 4/10

17 April 2005


Sorry Eric I have to agree with Leif and Phillip on this one. It's all a bit half-hearted and lack-lustre. Some tracks work, some miss completely and one or two are downright embarrassing (They're Red Hot). This'll go on the shelf and the Beano album will come out. See ya

 

Leon Pickens

Rating : 10/10

8 April 2005


It is great to see someone pay tribute to the king of the blues. Eric has made many little tributes in recording song samples in his own songs and doing different covers of Roberts music. Overall I love this album. It keeps in the same theme as i think Robert Johnson would've done it if he made it today. No over fancy guitar work nothing over whelming the song. Letting the songs feel and say what Robert had originally planned for. I've been a fan of Robert for many years and know his music well, Eric has done well in keeping to what Robert done and created. For all the people who think Eric Clapton is losing a step and his guitar playing is slipping. Don't listen to his new work then and stop your belly aching, and just stick to what you think he has done great. Appreciate don't hate!

 

Will Gingell

Rating : 10/10

1 March 2005


'Last fair deal gone down'. More like the 'first great deal in the shop'. As an acoustic learner what an inspiration this album is. Now I've bought the Sheet Music. Fantastic Eric!

 

Petri

Rating : 7/10

5 February 2005


Very good and professional, but misses Eric's passion. On most of the tracks he doesn't have a single solo concentrating on the compact sound of the songs. Well, it's nice to listen to, but not exciting like From the cradle. That said, I like way better The Stones' Love in vain and Eric himself did RJ much better, listen to the raw power of Crossroads or the fun and energy of Steady Rollin' Man.

 

Jonathan

Rating : 7/10

3 August 2004


This is a decent album but there are not that many surprises here. It is quite samey throughout but still, it's a nice album to listen to while dunking a custard cream and drinking a nice hot cup of tea.

 

David Irving

Rating : 10/10

7 June 2004


This is a fantastic transformation of Johnson's classic work. It manages to stay true to the timeless original whilst being rich with Eric's own very special style. Mr. Clapton has again produced an album that is both immediate, thrusting and tuneful, whilst also being full of the subtleties that make Clapton the God of Blues. Johnson's intriguing lyrics suit Clapton's vocals well and are reminiscent of Clapton's own writing; influenced of course by Johnson. The throughly bluesy pragmatics of Johnson's songs are as relevant now as when they were first written. Telling a tale of sadness, strife and happier times.

"Milkcow's calf blues" is a classically supreme foot tapper, injecting this with the energy of Eric's guitar has made it a track that I just want to listen to again and again. "If I had possession over judgement day" is the inspiration for the track "Rollin' & tumblin' " from Unplugged; it has lost none of its vigour or drive in this latest carnation and has matured into a more rounded song.

Every track features stunning guitar from Eric as well as fast fingered piano from Billy Preston, who gave such a legendary performance on the "One more car one more rider" album (another recommended listen).

This album is indicative of Clapton's unique eclecticism and adaptability that have earned him the title of the World's greatest guitarist.

 

Charlie K

Rating : 10/10

27 May 2004


This is Eric Clapton's first full-album commitment to the Depression-era delta bluesman, Robert Johnson, and the music he made in his eerily short life. This, however, is not to say that Slowhand has never known Johnson before. Clapton has studied and has been performing Robert Johnson songs since the mid-sixties, "Rambling on My Mind" being the first Johnson song that Clapton played on recording, playing with his post Yardbirds' group, John Mayall's Bluesbreakers.

Me and Mr. Johnson was released in late April entering the billboard charts at #18 and sustaining in the Top 40 on the Modern Pop charts, quite a feat for something like the blues. This latest project is blues purism to the max from the classic Johnson interpretation of "Me And The Devil Blues", to the haunting soul of "Hellhound on My Trail", to the playful ragtime of "They're Red Hot" (Quite a departure from the Clapton we know and love), this album hits all the right stops, presses your right buttons, and leaves you begging for more. MY only request is that it were more guitar heavy, not to say that that was a flaw on Clapton's part, but rather a respectful approach to a tribute album to a great legend, so you can't really nix Clapton for upholding the "Unwritten Laws of Tribute" so to speak. 10/10 all across the board.

 

Joe S

Rating : 10/10

26 May 2004


Without Robert Johnson, there would be no Eric Clapton. Johnson was the main influence on groundbreaking Delta blues artists like Muddy Waters and Sonny Boy Williamson, as well as Clapton and any blues that has existed since the 1930's harkens back to Johnson's moaning, groaning and wailing as well as his phrasing and guitar-playing. The songs on this Clapton CD are all Johnson's, with arrangements by Clapton. The material is outstanding and Clapton does it great justice, from the upbeat, almost party-like "They're Red Hot" to the desperate "Last Fair Deal Gone Down", it's a great CD and old blues fans should be pleased with Clapton's covers. The original versions by Johnson are tough to listen to as the fidelity of the original recordings isn't very good, so I'm glad to see (and hear) Clapton cover these songs so that future generations can enjoy them and better realize the roots of blues and, indeed, rock and roll.

 

Jinmyo

Rating : 10/10

6 May 2004


Clapton's versions of these classic Johnson pieces have depth, presence, and really rock out. The experience that Clapton brings to these now ancient songs is amazingly vivid.

Sadly, the only song that makes me feel that something is missing (other than Johnson) is "Hell Hound On My Trail." But with Johnson missing, perhaps that is what is missing.

I highly recommend this CD to anyone, especially those new to Clapton who might not be able to hear the stuff from the 80s and 90s freshly because of their datedness. Once you understand Clapton's mastery through this recent recording of very old tunes, you have the key to the treasury of Clapton's body of work.

 

Antonio

Rating : 10/10

25 April 2004


This time EC hits the mark on a studio album. He shows his understanding of the blues that moved him to become the brilliant guitarist and composer he's become. When you listen to Robert Johnson's originals and then you listen to EC's covers you see that he read perfectly the young rowdy bluesman's book. EC keeps the simplicity needed for these songs, trying to give the leadership to Johnson's creativity instead of his own arrangements and virtuosity. The Band behind EC is impressive. I'd outstand specially Jerry Portnoy's harmonica.

 

Jason

Rating : 9/10

18 April 2004


Its great to finally hear a fitting tribute to the greatest of all bluesman. Even better, it comes from Eric Clapton, a man who has been influenced musically more than nearly anyone by Johnson's painfully short and beautiful body of work. It's overall a fantastic album, with Clapton pulling together a blue ribbon back up band. It's hard to put down anything on this album, simply because these tunes mean so much to Eric. Then fuzzed out riffs of Milkcow's Calf Blues and Little Queen of Spades are so good they almost compare to Johnson's original versions. As does When You Got a Good Friend, and Traveling Riverside Blues, and Kind Hearted Woman, and 32-30 Blues, and well, nearly all of them. However, I wish Clapton didn't use his band as much on some of the songs.  While in some places his guitar takes the backseat to the band in order to let Johnson's song, not Clapton's playing, take the limelight, he could have brought the essence of the songs out more by playing a few songs solo acoustic, maybe with just a drummer or bass, to let the true spiritual connection between Clapton and Johnson soar without being muddled by extra musicians. This is especially evident in Me and the Devil Blues and Love In Vain, songs so delicately lovely and starkly soul-baring that they are almost too frail to tamper with.  But despite these slight shortcomings, Clapton still manages to give an effort that has truly taken a lifetime of listening and learning to accomplish, and there can't be a better tribute to Johnson out there.

 

Joao Victor

Rating : 10/10

17 April 2004


Inarguably the greatest blues album ever recorded by a musician. The band rocks, and the song selection is fantastic. Very bluesy songs like "When You Got a Good Friend", saloon type songs like "They're Red Hot", Rock type songs like "Milkcow's Calf Blues", ballad type songs "Kind Hearted Woman", happy blues like "If I Had Possession Over Judgement Day" and "Last Fair Deal Gone Down" great guitar solo of "Little Queen of Spades" and of course the classics "Love In Vain", "Traveling Riverside Blues", "Stop Breaking Down Blues" and "Hellhound On My Trail".

This is the ultimate blues record. The greatest recorded by Clapton in my opinion. Something everybody should have. Buy it now!

 

Jaime R

Rating : 10/10

6 April 2004


As a huge Robert Johnson, Eric Clapton and overall blues fan. This is the album I've been waiting for all my life. Robert Johnson's songs performed by Mr. Clapton may sound at times reconstituted, but then the blues has always been reconstituted.

Mr. Clapton and his band, that include bassist Nathan East, Billy Preston on Hammond organ and piano, and Doyle Bramhall II and Andy Fairweather Low on guitars, among others, perform each song with the same dedication and musicianship one expects from artists of their calibre. The same way in the 1940s Muddy Waters took the traditional, folk blues off the plantation and electrified it, adding bass, drums and harmonica, and in turn inventing the Chicago sound. The songs on this album are re-arranged to reflect the same dynamics of those recordings, all while staying true to the original concept. While it's difficult for me to choose favourite songs or highlights, a few that stand out to me are: Me and the Devil Blues, Kind Hearted Woman Blues, and Come on in My Kitchen.

What's the bottom line? If you want to enjoy a true blues experience, you cannot go wrong this album. However if you are a classic rock or adult contemporary Eric Clapton fan, then this may not be for you. Me and Mr. Johnson could easily be a continuation of the 1994 CD, From the Cradle.

 

Mark

Rating : 10/10

6 April 2004


Great Clapton Blues performance. Of course the music is Mr. Johnson's but the performance is classic Clapton, well played, great vocal, and of course the Billy Preston keyboards are amazing! Very worth while purchase.

 

Joe Tim

Rating : 10/10

4 April 2004


If you would give the Robert Johnson Collection a ten, then you must give Clapton's record a ten! It's been ten years since the blistering From the Cradle album, and now, once again, Clapton is doing what he loves, Playing the Blues of Robert Johnson. Really amazing that he took some of Robert Johnson's best and played the songs with his band in his own interpretation. Billy Preston adds some great organ work to "Little Queen of Spades" and great piano to songs like "They're Red Hot" and "If I Had Possession over Judgment Day." Doyle Bramhall II adds some great acoustic and electric slide playing  Clapton's guitar playing on "They're Red Hot" and "Hell Hound on My Trail". Clapton brings his old harmonica buddy Jerry Portnoy back for some fluid harmonica playing! Clapton's guitar playing takes a backseat here to the arrangements and singing, he'll save it for the show this summer, but Clapton's guitar playing and singing really show allusions to Robert Johnson playing by himself, only Clapton has a whole band. "When You Got a Good Friend" is classic Clapton guitar playing for only one time 'round, but the arrangements of this song are wonderful. Songs like "Stop Breaking Down" and "Milkcow's Calf Blues" find Eric playing the cream related guitar playing he played on "Crossroads" 36 years ago. "Love in Vain" is really nice, maybe not quite as good as the Rolling Stones' version, but Clapton's guitar cooks very nicely on this one! I could go on forever but won't. I would suggest all Clapton fans and Robert Johnson fans alike to buy this album!

 

Michael Wheeler

Rating : 9/10

3 April 2004


Eric Clapton for years has recorded songs by Robert Johnson. The two together seem like a natural combination.

If you study Clapton over the years he does fragments of Robert Johnson songs. For instance "Crossroads" has parts of different songs such as "Traveling Riverside Blues". Now you are able to hear Clapton perform the songs the way they were written. The music is Clapton's interpretation of Johnson's music.

Many of the guitar riffs are taken from songs already recorded by Clapton. What appeals to me is the "down home, Black eyed peas" atmosphere this album has', You feel like Clapton is on the porch playing blues guitar. This is Mississippi Delta blues the way Robert Johnson intended it. Clapton has Billy Preston with him on this album and the combination is unbelievable. The songs that stand out are "Theyre Red Hot" This has Billy Preston playing some of the best piano you will ever hear. It also shows a very relaxed Clapton playing guitar. The next song of note is "Me and the Devil Blues. This song is another song about the Devil and it makes you wonder about Johnson and his obsession with the Devil. It almost makes it seem Johnson and the Devil are one, but you hear his torment. "Travelin Riverside Blues" of course is where Clapton got most of his Cream Classic "Crossroads.

This version to me is much more interesting than the one done by Led Zeppelin. A must for hard core blues fans like myself. "Stop Breaking down blues is strong. I thought this CD was comprised of songs Clapton had not released before. To me Kind Hearted Woman is an exception. This appears almost note for note to the one on the Blues CD he did a few years ago and his Crossroads 2 Box set. The song however is very good. The Best 3 songs on the CD are "Come on in my kitchen, If I had possession over Judgement Day which basically is the same as "Rollin and Tumblin on his Unplugged CD. Love in Vain is nothing like the version by the Rolling Stones, but very solid and well worth the listen. Hell Hound on my trail again is again about Johnson and the devil. This song again is very strong and one of the gems of the CD. The CD has a lot of Blues slide guitar and much of it is acoustic. Billy Preston adds solid keyboards. This CD is for hard core Blues fans. It is and always will be a career CD for Clapton and a must for any blues fans, especially Eric Clapton fans. This is down home Chitlin and Black eyed peas Mississippi Delta Blues at its very best..............ENJOY!

 

Bill Rosenplanter

Rating : 9/10

3 April 2004


Tastefully done as one would expect from an EC offering. A nice blend of tunes that are all individually distinctive. Love the versions of They're Red Hot and Milkcow Calf Blues.

 

Leif Hicks

Rating : 5/10

31 March 2004


I guess my expectations were simply too high. But still it has to be said: instead of being the expected blues feast combining the masterdom of two of my biggest musical heroes, "Me and Mr Johnson" is just a unemotional run-through of Robert Johnson's legendary songs. The only tracks that show signs of inspiration are the gutsy versions of "Travelin' Riverside Blues" and "Milkcow's Calf Blues". Sadly, the rest of the album is almost completely emotionless karaoke. I've read from some articles that the songs were taped in between the recording of another album with little rehearsing, and that the rest of EC's band somehow inexplicably did not previously know Johnson's songs, so I can understand why the material isn't 100%. But why release the album, when it's clearly sub-par by Claptonesque standards (compared with e.g. the divine "From the Cradle" -album)? Eric Clapton is the greatest guitarist in the world, who can move my heart like no-one else. But "Me and Mr Johnson" left me with only a feeling of sadness.

 

Jody Rice

Rating : 10/10

31 March 2004


Excellent album listening to this album made me feel like Eric was taken over by his hero it's a worthy tribute to Robert Johnson! I recommend to anyone turn on to this album to pick up the Robert Johnson The complete recordings 2CD boxed set released by Columbia records in 1990 if you can still find it. The set comes with a great book on Robert Johnson it has 2 great essays on RJ by Slowhand himself and Keith Richards. So pick up both albums Slowhand fans you'll feel like your in the Mississippi delta! 4 out of 4 stars!

 

Phillip

Rating : 4/10

31 March 2004


Eric needs to sell his soul to the devil (again), his electric guitar has lost its fire, he could have stretched himself and done an acoustic version (i.e. like his recent acoustic version of Key to the Highway") of these songs but he chose the easy way out and used Chicago blues style and has missed the whole Robert Johnson pain. Listen to the Rolling Stones do "Love in Vain", Steve Miller - "Come on into my kitchen" etc Apart from some scintillating piano work the fare offered here is fairly pedestrian. Eric sell of all of your guitars and just keep one acoustic guitar and play alone!!!!! Oh well looks like I'll have to listen to "Unplugged" every day now for another 12 years. Or Maybe I'll go back to listening to "Blood on the Tracks" everyday.

 

Nick Smith

Rating : 10/10

31 March 2004


SUPERB!!!!!!, this is a definite MUST buy. this is one of Clapton's best and its definitely expected to be great since its an all blues album. there aren't as many blistering solos as past blues albums but the solos that are played are awesome and show that Clapton is still the current day master of the blues.

 

Evan Bloomer

Rating : 10/10

31 March 2004


This album is great The opener "When You Got A Good Friend" is a good start. "Little Queen Of Spades" has a great "Slowhand" solo. "Milkcow's Calf Blues" OUTSTANDING Slide work and "Come On In My Kitchen" is a good acoustic slide track. You did it again. Thanks Eric.


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