Clapton: The Autobiography
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“I found a pattern in my behavior that had been repeating itself for years, decades even. Bad choices were my specialty, and if something honest and decent came along, I would shun it or run the other way.”

With striking intimacy and candor, Eric Clapton tells the story of his eventful and inspiring life in this poignant and honest autobiography. More than a rock star, he is an icon, a living embodiment of the history of rock music. Well known for his reserve in a profession marked by self-promotion, flamboyance, and spin, he now chronicles, for the first time, his remarkable personal and professional journeys.

Born illegitimate in 1945 and raised by his grandparents, Eric never knew his father and, until the age of nine, believed his actual mother to be his sister. In his early teens his solace was the guitar, and his incredible talent would make him a cult hero in the clubs of Britain and inspire devoted fans to scrawl “Clapton is God” on the walls of London’s Underground. With the formation of Cream, the world's first supergroup, he became a worldwide superstar, but conflicting personalities tore the band apart within two years. His stints in Blind Faith, in Delaney and Bonnie and Friends, and in Derek and the Dominos were also short-lived but yielded some of the most enduring songs in history, including the classic “Layla.”

During the late sixties he played as a guest with Jimi Hendrix and Bob Dylan, as well as the Beatles, the Rolling Stones, and longtime friend George Harrison. It was while working with the latter that he fell for George’s wife, Pattie Boyd, a seemingly unrequited love that led him to the depths of despair, self-imposed seclusion, and drug addiction. By the early seventies he had overcome his addiction and released the bestselling album 461 Ocean Boulevard, with its massive hit “I Shot the Sheriff.” He followed that with the platinum album Slowhand, which included “Wonderful Tonight,” the touching love song to Pattie, whom he finally married at the end of 1979. A short time later, however, Eric had replaced heroin with alcohol as his preferred vice, following a pattern of behavior that not only was detrimental to his music but contributed to the eventual breakup of his marriage.
In the eighties he would battle and begin his recovery from alcoholism and become a father. But just as his life was coming together, he was struck by a terrible blow: His beloved four-year-old son, Conor, died in a freak accident. At an earlier time Eric might have coped with this tragedy by fleeing into a world of addiction. But now a much stronger man, he took refuge in music, responding with the achingly beautiful “Tears in Heaven.”

Clapton is the powerfully written story of a survivor, a man who has achieved the pinnacle of success despite extraordinary demons. It is one of the most compelling memoirs of our time.

Customer Reviews:

  • Fascinating Story
    After reading some of the negative reviews written on this site, I delved into EC's autobiography with some skepticism. What I found was a most fascinating story covering 40 years of one of the greatest icons in the history of music. Expecting to find an egotistical tale of success(from someone actually dubbed "God"), I instead found Clapton to be an extremely humble, insecure and naive man, despite all his fame and fortune. He candidly tells his most inward thoughts and reveals many mistakes along the way.
    The book begins in his early childhood when he learns his parents and brother are really his grandparents and uncle, and that his young mom wants little to do with him. This would leave any child feeling vulnerable and insecure, and Clapton is no exception. He believes this to be the cause of much of his erratic behavior and to his many poor choices of failed relationships throughout his life.
    We follow him through swinging London in the '60s as he joins, and leaves, several legendary bands. Clapton explains how Cream was doomed before they even began; how he just wasn't into Blind Faith as much as he should have been; his lack of confidence was what kept him from going solo for so many years.
    Clapton is painfully honest about his severe heroin and alcohol addictions, his botched suicide attempt and his obsession with Pattie Boyd. He describes how awkward it was to be good friends with George Harrison, all the while trying to steal his wife.

    What I really enjoyed about this book was the humor as Clapton laughs at himself in retrospect at his naivete regarding his bizarre behavior. He discusses how he frequently brought derelicts home to his estate because he thought they might be more "real" than anyone else, but instead found them to be "barking mad and talking gibberish", with poor Pattie having to cook dinner for them all. There's the hilarious story of his being conned by a crazy woman from New York into performing spells and incantations in an attempt to win back Pattie's affections.

    With this honest autobiography, Clapton has dared to lower himself from the pedestal and join the ranks of the "everyday" man who struggles to get by each day. This may be the best autobiography I have ever read....more info
  • Not a god, just a man
    First let me say I enjoyed the book very much. One can always wish for more, here and there, and unless someone writes a multi-volume autobiography, something is bound to be left out. If you love rock music and grew up listening to Clapton you will probably enjoy getting to know the man behind the guitar. Very readable and flows well.

    Much is being said here, some quite nasty, about Eric Clapton. First of all it was very brave and humble of him to bear his soul in all is good and bad. If you had not gathered from the reading that he is very regretful and remorseful about much of his behavior then you need to re-read the book. If you partake in much reading at all about the rock and roll generation of the 1960, 70 etc, you will quickly discover much of this behavior was typical and standard amoung musicians. People have built-up musicians into "god-like" and are quite disappointed when their god turns into a regular flawed human, that happens to be quite talented and hard-working. It was an age in rebellion. An age that had turned its back on Christian morality, and in the end, after addiction, death, disease and old age have found out there was a wisdom in moral self-restraint. Very few "rock gods" were strong enough to avoid these traps.

    It is good now that he has found a sense of self and stability. I congratulate him on his quest for honesty in life and music. Keep growing Eric. Thanks!...more info
  • Eric Clapton bio
    This was a good autobiography of Eric Clapton. Easy to read and very insightful....more info
  • A musicians tale
    I am a rock and roll fan, so of course I was eager to read the life and times of Eric Clapton. While I had heard mixed reviews regarding the book, I was extremely happy with what I read. The book is set up in an easy to understand way with facts, antidotes, and personal touches sprinkled through out.
    The main criticism that I have understood are that he is self centered, caught to much in what should or could have been, and skipped over inspirations. I thought every single story told, while some more interesting than others, was genuine and informative.
    If you like rock and roll, Eric Clapton, or music in general, this book will deliver you a great read and fine entertainment. Read it, enjoy it, and listen to Clapton....more info
  • Disillusioned
    Like many others, I looked forward to reading about the life of a musician whom I had admired for 40 years. Unfortunately Clapton's book is disappointing, not only from a literary standpoint (he needed a ghostwriter or an editor who could stand up to him and make some sorely needed changes), but from a narrative perspective as well. Two-thirds of the book is about a selfish, immature individual who truly didn't deserve the success that came his way. I found much of his childish behavior to be maddening. The last third of the book centering on his redemption from addictions, also helps redeem the story. (I found that I was nearly as disgusted with Clapton by the time I finished as I had been before his second rehab stint.) All in all, I kinda wished I hadn't read the book at all. Some things are better left unknown. Sorry, Eric!...more info
  • Old age, musicianship, or fame do not imply wisdom
    DO NOT buy this book, but DO READ it. Borrow it from a friend, or from the library. If you need proof that old age does not equal wisdom, this is it. If you need proof that famous musicians should not be entrusted with any oracular powers, this is it. But I suppose many people need that proof, so in that sense it is a good idea to read this book. It will show you the real Clapton, the incompetent writer and all-around boring, self-serving careerist.

    After reading this book, I think Clapton would do anything just to further his career, and after getting his way, he'd write another book about it where he'd say he's made a huge mistake, and he'd like everyone to say a prayer for him. Oh, and he's better now, and the last years have been the best of his life. And he's all wise and perfect now. He'd just been thinking that he's perfect in the past, but now he really is. Honest....more info
  • Disappointing book.
    As a big fan of Cream and Derek and the Dominoes and a lover of the Bluesbreaker album with Mayall I looked forward to reading Mr. Clapton's autobiography, especially concerning the early years. I found the author to be a very unlikeable, emotionally shallow, self absorbed narrator. He basically describes how he's screwed up everyone's life he has been associated with, including his own, with no apparent guilt or remorse. Sort of just a big whatever but it all ends well because he's happy now. Not an inspiring read at all....more info
  • Still God
    For someone like me who was around for Eric Clapton's early career with the Yardbirds, Bluesbreakers and Cream - this book is fantastic. The history, the bald honesty and the insights into the greatest blues guitarist in the world make this book a must read for anyone who loves Clapton. ...more info
  • ERIC CLAPTON SUCKS....
    I Loved the man until I read this book. His story is one of following others. He focused on Patty not because he really loved her, but because George did. Ultimatelly, he is his worst fear... a fake. hph...more info
  • Never Too Late...
    Never too late... to heal. Never too late... to have a happy childhood.

    Music star Eric Clapton has penned a first-class read about healing one's life, setting one's demons to rest, and creating happiness and serenity from harrowing beginnings.

    Clapton's early life was traumatic: the illegitimate son of a teenage mother, he was raised by his grandparents and told that his grandparents were his mother and father. The only difficulty with the myth was that Clapton's parentage was common knowledge in his small, English village and that Clapton discovered the truth by the age of nine. That his mother continued to repudiate Clapton until he reached adulthood only exacerbated his wounds.

    Clapton's early and gargantuan success in rock music allowed him to fuel his insecurity with drugs and drink. The first half of his life, by his own account, was a train wreck, characterized by his fathering two children out of wedlock and his disastrous marriage to model Pattie Boyd, the wife of Beatle George Harrison. But Clapton, unlike so many others, finds the fortitude to beat his demons and addictions in his 40s, his desire to do so fueled by the death of his young son, Conor, and his love for creating music. The last 20 years of Clapton's life are times of sobriety and happiness, capped by a late marriage, fatherhood to three small girls, and reconciliation with his eldest daughter.

    Clapton's autobiography is an unsparing tour de force. Clapton's prose is lean and understated, but he depicts his demons fully and does nothing to excuse or sugarcoat his behavior. His account of surrendering to a higher power and attaining sobriety and more lasting happiness than can be found in a bottle or a powder is moving, as is his account of mastering his emotions and working with others in recovery. Music fans will justly admire Clapton for his dedication to his art, his desire to perfect his musicianship, and his dedication to sharing the purity of the blues greats he admires.

    In short, Eric Clapton has written an excellent autobiography that can be appreciated not only by fans of his music, but by anyone who admires a hard-won struggle to survive and transcend. Kudos to Eric Clapton for sharing his riveting story. Although I know little about his music, I have become a fan of Clapton, the man.

    ...more info
  • Eric Clapton
    One of if not the best autobiogrophies I have ever read.I really only read sports or music related books and this is one of the best know dout about it....more info
  • Clapton's Good Confession
    Yesterday I read Clapton's amazing autobiography in one sitting. Now I must admit, I took my teenage kids to a day-long music festival where the primary genre was "screamo". So while they were taking in the head-banging and mosh-pit action, I listened to Mark Knopfler on my Ipod and read Clapton's amazing confession of a life nearly wasted, except by God's grace. No, I am not 100% sure he has accepted Jesus Christ as his Lord and Savior. But if he was being as honest in the book as I believe, then I wouldn't bet against it.

    Here is his confession that I think is so humble and so honest:

    "...I was in complete despair," "...In the privacy of my room, I begged for help. I had no notion who I thought I was talking to, I just knew that I had come to the end of my tether ... and, getting down on my knees, I surrendered. Within a few days I realized that ... I had found a place to turn to, a place I'd always known was there but never really wanted, or needed, to believe in. From that day until this, I have never failed to pray in the morning, on my knees, asking for help, and at night, to express gratitude for my life and, most of all, for my sobriety. I choose to kneel because I feel I need to humble myself when I pray, and with my ego, this is the most I can do. If you are asking why I do all this, I will tell you ... because it works, as simple as that."

    Clapton did not mention in the autobiography his born-again confession of Christ from the Blind Faith days. Some say he recanted it during his years of addiction. And yes, the memoir does demonstrate his unsophisticated theology, his agnosticisms and even his interest in non-Christian religious concepts.

    But the bottom line is, the man's confession was humble and heartfelt. He attends church and buries his dead in Christian funerals. He was married in a Christian ceremony. No, that doesn't make him a believer. But his confession is surely a "good confession".

    Here is the life of a boy born of an unwed mother, hurt by the shame of his bastard status in his working-class extended family. His pain and shame drove him to the guitar and that outlet lead to one of the greatest musical talents of the 20th (and now the 21st) century. His life personified the nightmare of the cultural disintegration of the 1960s and '70s. He lived it out in the self-centered "I am God" focus; that is the result of rejecting the true God in humility and embracing "me" as the one who I will glorify. Yet all the while, he wanted to do good and not bad. But the bad found him, and he embraced it in a long death-kiss. Still, God was merciful, eventually. God knows and cares for His own.

    Clapton did not have to see the graffiti "Clapton is God" scrawled on the subway walls in London. He was already his own God, focused on everything that would make HIM happy, make Him feel better since his family humiliated and rejected him; make HIM get what he wanted. His obsession on the most pure music, the most beautiful women (even a friend's wife while they were still attempting to maintain a marriage), the best people to play with, the finest in "street fashion", was all about his need to have everything his way.

    And no, God's not through with him yet. The introspection he presents through the amazing telling of his story is partial at best. But it is sincere. His "surrender" is real and his telling of his progress (after the disaster of addiction) rings true.

    EC is a humble man in many ways. He is humble like most humble people; imperfect humility. He is realistic about his shortcomings and his gratitude for the blessings God has given him, including letting him live. He is humble in acknowledging God's purview to take his son, not rebelling against Him in the pain of such a monumental loss. Yet he is still the rich man loving his wealth, but in a humble way. Even so, he does give it away; he's an beautifully generous man. So why resent his upland fowling and his fly fishing? (those happen to be two of my personal peccadilloes, and it's not hard to eat all the trout, pheasant and grouse one can harvest in a season)

    He is still Clapton, still the greatest guitarist alive. God took Hendrix and Allman early. He acknowledged their even greater talent, but if they had lived, would they have been as prolific or successful? We'll never know. Well, maybe we will know on that Day, if Jimi and Duane were saved (and maybe they were; only God knows for sure).

    Regarding his writing, I think it's absolutely perfect. He's talking to the reader individually. It's almost a conversation, not a monologue. He makes some initial comments and then, as though the reader had made an insightful reply or query, he continues, as though responding in a friendly interview over a nice cup of coffee. The photos in the paperback book were interesting, and I'm glad they were there. There was not a good shot of Patty, although she was certainly in good form in the beach shot. But the photos were not the point; his life story as he told it was captivating.

    I couldn't help but wonder how he might have truly changed the world if he had turned from the drugs and sex and simply stuck with the music and used it as a ministry to God. He is now 21 years sober and his music has become the standard upon which much of modern music is founded. His influence cannot be overstated; certainly on par with the Beatles.

    What if he had turned to Christ after that Blind Faith concert when the Christian fans prayed with him to accept Jesus? What if he had followed "In the Presence of the Lord" with something more like "Shout to the Lord" instead of "Cocaine" and "Lay Down Sally"? Could he have helped turn us from becoming a society that aborts full term babies on demand? Might he have helped turn the world away from recreationalizing sex? Might he have helped keep marriage sacred and honored instead of trashed?

    We'll never know, although it's something he may hear from Christ on that Day. Someone with as much influence as he has had on our world culture could have helped prevent much of the insanity we have bequeathed the current generation. Yesterday I watched as teenagers cavorted proudly with the self-mutilation of full-body tattoos trashing their formerly God-given beauty. Might Clapton the man of God (instead of simply "Clapton the God") influenced society in a way that would have spared so many from so much pain. Yes, he's doing his part for addicts. Praise God. But how many of those addicts were influenced by the life he lived as the addict who could still be the world's greatest guitarist?

    One last comment. I saw Clapton play on his tour in Florida in '06. His performance was peerless. I've never seen a guitar man play with such accomplishment, power, passion or genius (and I saw Duane Allman from the 3rd row in a crowd of maybe 300 in 1970). He played the Derek and the Dominoes tunes better than the original, and I thought I was going to have to wait for heaven to hear them that way (and that was on the long chance that he'd actually make it there!) The old man can play (he's 8 years older than me, so that's OLD)! Today I'm buying his Robert Johnson and JJ Cale albums on the strength of the autobiography.

    Hendrix, Allman, John Lennon, Jim Morrison, Janis Joplin all should have lived. Music would have benefited from them living longer, I believe. But maybe, if they had lived, the world would be even more secularized, evil and degenerate than it is today. The fact is, Clapton was a passive player in the cultural revolution. He was an unlikely culture warrior. His virtuosity, his musical genius was his hallmark; the music made him famous, not his on-stage demeanor. The fact is he was a bit player in the culture wars, even though he was surrounded by the prime suspects. Most of his degeneracy was personal, destroying mostly his loved ones and himself.

    But his disastrous life, until he finally kicked heroin, alcohol and whoredoggery, influenced the culture just the same. No, not as much as might have happened if Lennon, Morrison or Joplin had lived an additional 25 years. Certainly Mick Jagger and Keith Richards have done nothing to restore traditional family values in the last quarter century.

    But EC has repented. He has turned away from the old life of insanity and turned to a life of God and family. He is a man of prayer. He clearly puts his sobriety as his number one necessity in life, and from my reading he credits his sobriety to God. And then his family is next, because without his sobriety his family would be in grave danger. And he's also seeking to help others by his rehab facility in Antigua. Then it's about his fishing, hunting and nice yacht.

    That is the mark of the Christian life. God is number 1, others are number 2 and I'm number 3. That is Clapton's testimony, told in humility and self-effacement.

    All in all, that is what salvation is about. Turning from the sin that separates one from God and turning to Him, seeking His face first, relying on His strength alone for life, and then, by His strength, serving others.

    Of course, I may have misread the story. Certainly Clapton used a degree of restraint in his testimony. That was smart; coming out too overtly "Jesus Freak" could turn many hard cases away.

    This is certainly the most surprisingly inspiring read I've found in many years. Highly recommended!

    ...more info
  • Contemporary PR to add to the artist's market
    The band Cream always kind of intrigued me. They seemed so ragtag, yet really quite good. Then, shortly after I graduated from college, I had a housemate who was an accomplished blues guitarist--in contrast to my cheap attempt, you know, hoping for the fame without putting any energy into it. He informed me that Clapton got all his style from black guitarists. I took his word for it.

    Well, Clapton confirmed that. He was just a kid, bought himself a really cheap guitar, and spent hours mimicking styles of Muddy Waters, etc. Then he moved into the Yardbirds, and the rest is history.

    Would that it were so smooth.

    Actually, I listened to the recorded version as I really don't have the time to read a showbiz autobiography. I find such texts to be so laughably self-indulgent. And I hoped for more from Eric. He is, after all, quite talented, that's obvious. Yet for most of his life, all he did is over-indulge. He got strung out on junk, then used some accupuncture means of overcoming his addiction--I challenge that such a practice would work, but for the time being, I'll take his word for it as well.

    Then he switched substances and drunk until he dropped. He attached himself to George Harrison's ex-wife over whom he'd had a fantasy for some time. In the meantime, he spent more time with more women than most of us will be able to fantasize.

    To make a long story short, after his son died, he decided to dry up. Then he met a woman half his age and since they've had four kids and he's pleased as punch while still attending his 12 step meetings and, oh, life is so wonderful.

    I'm sorry but I get really tired of showbiz autobiographies. Most of us who are music fans I think anticipated that Cream were skilled musicians with great tours. What was important was the talent and music, not their personality clashes and constant indulgence in more drugs than you could find in any city on any day.

    Such an autobiography makes its writer look like an ordinary guy. But, no, Eric, you had more money than most of us will see in a lifetime. You bought a new home at the drop of a hat, travelled more in a year than the rest of us will be able to in a lifetime. So, no, you're not just one of the guys.

    As I indicate in the title, I think as rock stars are getting riper--Clapton is now 63--the PR stunt, that which gets more of us to buy their albums is to write an autobiography so we don't forget them either. And the "one of the guys" is a shrewd means of getting us to identify with them. But it's not particularly honest, whether the author thinks it is or not.

    Anyway, it was written pretty well, I guess, but finishing off with "I'm all recovered now" is just another dimension of the cliche of the showbiz autobiography.

    I hoped I'd respect Eric Clapton more when I finished the book. Now I find I'm getting more cynical in general for the celebrity crowd....more info
  • A COMPLEX AND MULTIFACETED LIFE
    The complex and multifaceted life of Eric Clapton is candidly revealed upon the pages of this nostalgic and heart wrenching book. Clapton doesn't gloss over his addictions and unrestrained excessive indulgences, and he acknowledges that he was not merely a phoenix that burned and then brilliantly rose from the ashes---he had support, encouragement, and help. Clapton wrestled with many demons and he lost some of the battles and won some. As a man he was not often impressive. As a musician, he is a genius. He is a flawed human being---like the rest of us. Clapton "started over" more often that one would imagine. This book left me feeling like I had been shown the heart of an ordinary man who had an extraordinary gift. He did the best that he could at times, he didn't give a damn at times---and he admits it.

    ...more info
  • Fallen Star? Well, at least tarnished.
    As someone who has admired the guitar playing of Eric Clapton since the 60s I looked forward to reading his autobiography hoping to learn more about the man and his music. What I instead found was the story of a self-absorbed, undisciplined, hurtful, irresponsible, drug abusing addict & drunk, who can add ingratitude to his list of considerable character flaws. While I commend the man for his talent and the sobriety and responsibility he has embraced in recent years, this is not someone who deserves much in the way of hero worship. As a former professional musician I fully understand the social environment and temptations one must endure and overcome to succeed in that industry. No matter his talent, succumbing to rock's excesses to this degree is not very commendable. The Crossroads Center really is about the least he could do to make amends. ...more info
  • Awesome!

    This book is so good.....what a page turner...it is full of interesting
    insight and lots of industry names etc....Eric Clapton is really open....more info
  • Great Read
    This is a very well written book by one of the best guitarists of all time. There are many insights into how his music came to be and more importantly, how Eric came to get a handle on his life....more info
  • Clapton is Just OK

    This book was a recent birthday gift, and while I enjoyed it, it also confirms my prejudience against celebrity autobiographies. Usually, it is all about me. That is the case here until, rather late in life, Clapton grows up and faces up to the damage that drugs and alcohol are doing to him and the people about him.

    In fairness, Clapton is quite modest about his remarkable gifts as a musician. But he also provides little critical analysis of his skills and those of his fellow musicians. His musical influences are discussed, but his skills shot him to the top at such an early age, there is little of the struggling artist trying to make it phase to his career that I usually find the best parts of biographies. Still, if you like his music, you will like the book.
    ...more info
  • Could not even finish it...
    I love Eric Clapton, but this book is so boring I couldn't even finish it. There are way too many "english" terms in it and you can only read so much about his druggie days.
    On the other hand, I really liked Patti Boyd's book-Wonderful Tonight....more info
  • Clapton tries to get it right
    After reading "Clapton" I understand Eric a little bit better. Granted, I feel that he is not the "watch me bleed" type he tries to reveal parts of himself to the reader. He is brief and provides little explanation for his substance abuse and doesn't reallly elaborate much during the book on key things that people want to know: feelings about his troubled marriage to Patti, how he felt when he lost his friend George, etc. Yeah, he is very lowkey about these episodes in his life but I feel that he has achieve enough distance to talk about his relationship with his mother (very confusing family) and his early substance problems. I truly feel that he has tried to be as honest as he can about his life. But, he is not going to open up his gut and just spew up his inner most feelings for the entire world. In this way I think that he demonstrates very healthy boundaries!! I think the book was good because he wrote himself not so ghost writer!!...more info
  • Eric's 'True Confessions'
    Many Clapton fans were really disappointed in this book because they (me, included) discovered their hero was not the good guy they assumed he was. It is shocking, indeed, to read page-after-page of Clapton describing his shallowness, selfishness and excesses regarding woman, alcohol and drugs. It's like he has this compulsion to tell us every sin he ever committed, so he can be forgiven. Either that, or he's just totally coming clean.

    Clapton's accounts of stealing George Harrison's wife; not being there with this son when the little boy had his tragic accident; his many trips going in-and-out of expensive rehabs and making of a mockery of them; tales of being totally stoned at many of his concerts; looking at women solely as sex objects, etc, are all in this book. Frankly, it gets depressing.

    Yet, the Eric Clapton I've seen since the 1990s on film, on DVD, on TV interviews, etc., has come along way since those hedonistic `60s, `70s and `80s days and who I am to throw stones at his past lifestyle? If he had continued that route, and bragged out it....well, then I'd feel different. However, in recent years Clapton is a good family fan and someone who raises millions of dollars to help others and is respected by his peers: solid people like Vince Gill and B.B. King. In other words, Clapton has matured.

    Perhaps this book is a good exhibit of why we shouldn't idolize human beings. It only sets us up for disappointment. I'll continue to be a (music) fan of his and just pray that Eric sincerely has "changed his evil ways." Maybe I'm naive, but think he has....more info
  • Should be titled; Confessions of an Unrepentent Sociopath.
    I really can'tunderstand how anyone could like this book. It's a horribly written, shallow piece of tripe about an ego maniac's professional and sexual conquests, a tale of a man who got lucky in a musical movement and then used his fame and money to trounce those around him.
    As a guitarist, I always admired his playing, especially in his early days with Cream, but I defy anyone to read this and walk away without utter contempt for this self-centered, spoiled brat who has the intellectual capacity and moral depth of a flat worm. To be fair, at least he appears honest with the reader. He expresses no regret for how his actions may have traumatized those around him, so at least he is not faking contrition. What's hard to take, however, is that he boasts of his money, fame, and his celebrity status in such a way that he seems to expect the reader to be cheering for him when, in truth, he makes you squirm with disgust. It's as if he has digested a life filled with garbage and then puked it up in form of a book, expecting all around to be in awe of his vomit. Okay, maybe that's a bit too strong, but now that I have a glimpse of who this man really is, I regret having bought his music thus contributing to his success.
    I am mature enough to know celebrities are not gods and have the same foibles and fallacies as any human, but it's the lack of remorse and his apparent emotional detachment that is disturbing.
    His book has no literary merit, entertainment value, and offers no inspiration as do many other books about those who have attained fame and fortune. It's a story of a man who had a gift for music, but was, in all other respects, repugnant and, worse, horribly boring.

    As an afterthought; I haven't reread the book to verify this and don't expect to pick it up again to check, but on recollection, it appears that if you took the adjectives "amazing", "fantastic", and "wonderful" from his writing, it could have shortened the book by a third. ...more info
  • Agree with RC Composer
    This book is just like ec / shallow, vain, self absorbed and at times vengful. A silly chauvanistic child that even 12 step program can't help. He's still a dry alcoholic and drug addict, never able to change. I would put zero stars but the computer won't let me....more info
  • Clapton Must Be The Luckiest Man Alive.
    I play guitar, so I know Clapton's works and guitar playing. Yngwie once said that Clapton has been playing the same blues pentatonic scale for over 40 years. That is true, but there's something special about his guitar playing. Anyway, I couldn't wait for this book and I am utterly disappointed.

    He is self-indulgent and abusive to women. Although he claims that he and George Harrison were the best friends, he hardly talked about George's death in this book. As others have written, Eric doesn't seem like a person who can be a true friend.

    Yet, he has somehow drawn a lot of good musicians to support him. He has always had good management. He doesn't have good composition skills. Most of his well-known songs were composed by others. Even the opening riff of Layla was not his composition. His vocals are nothing to write home about.

    So, how does he have one of the best careers in rock? It's a mystery. He always had some people to help him. Well, I guess it's his talent to have that kind of people around him.

    Getting back to the book itself, it's shallow and doesn't offer anything new. Basically, the whole book can be summarized as follows: I did tons of drugs, I drank tons of alcohol, and I abused women. ...more info
  • Not shallow...just blunt and brutally honest....
    After reading all of the reviews and having read the book (re-reading it now)without them..I find it not so surprising that those who have been fans of E.C. found this book a disappointment...it is TOO honest for those who have put him on a pedestal after all these years, it is flawed like he is , but honest, and shallow? Hm.... I don't know about that, self -absorbed, yeah hello he is a musician... most of the good ones are..Prince anyone (remember , Purple Rain is one of E.C.s fave solos of all time)? He recounts many friendships in very delicate accounts and reflections of the people in his life, it is written by a very honest and frank guy...I would think it would be daunting for anyone of his stature to be completely brilliant let alone REMEMBER any of the stuff with the amount of drugs and booze he did...he is an enigma at moments and can be read easily (pun intended) at others, he is an artist..enough said.......more info