Derek & The Dominos - Fillmore East - 1970

Derek & The Dominos - Layla was met with wild indifference at first.

Derek And The Dominos – Live At Fillmore East – 2nd Night – 1970 – Past Daily Backstage Pass

Derek & The Dominos - Fillmore East - 1970
Derek & The Dominos – Layla was met with wild indifference at first.

Derek And The Dominos – Live At Fillmore East – 2nd Night – October 24, 1970 – Jim Moody Collection –

Derek And The Dominos this weekend – recorded live at Fillmore East, the second of two nights, on October 24, 1970.

Clapton fans know this concert, most likely both nights, by heart. Milestone performances by a band, only together for a very short period of time, not all that well received commercially at first, but have gone on to become one of the legendary periods of Rock history.

Derek and the Dominos formed in the spring of 1970 by guitarist and singer Eric Clapton, keyboardist and singer Bobby Whitlock, bassist Carl Radle and drummer Jim Gordon. All four members had previously played together in Delaney & Bonnie and Friends, during and after Clapton’s brief tenure with Blind Faith. Dave Mason supplied additional lead guitar on early studio sessions and played at their first live gig. Another participant at their first session as a band was George Harrison, the recording for whose album All Things Must Pass marked the formation of Derek and the Dominos.

The band released only one studio album, Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs, produced by Tom Dowd, which also featured extensive contributions on lead and slide guitar from Duane Allman. A double album, Layla did not immediately enjoy strong sales or receive widespread radio airplay, but went on to earn critical acclaim. Although released in 1970 it was not until March 1972 that the album’s single “Layla” (a tale of unrequited love inspired by Clapton’s infatuation with his friend Harrison’s wife, Pattie Boyd) made the top ten in both the United States and the United Kingdom. The album is often considered to be the defining achievement of Clapton’s career.

Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs was issued in November 1970. According to Shapiro, relative to the band and Dowd’s high expectations, it was a “critical and commercial flop”. Clapton similarly describes Layla as having “died a death” on release. Although it received favorable reviews in Rolling Stone and The Village Voice, the album missed the top ten in the United States and failed to chart at all in the United Kingdom, until a reissue on CD resulted in a one-week stay at number 68 in 2011. It garnered little attention, partly as a result of a lack of promotion by Polydor, and partly due to the public’s ignorance of Clapton’s presence in the band. Dowd said that he “felt it was the best album I’d been involved with since The Genius of Ray Charles” and was disappointed at the lack of acclaim it initially received.

“Layla” was included on The History of Eric Clapton in 1972, and Atlantic issued the song as a single in July that year. It became a hit, reaching number 10 in America and number 7 in Britain. The success of the title track in 1972 led to a reappraisal of Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs. It has since received widespread critical acclaim and has been ranked among the best albums of all time by VH1 (at number 89). and Rolling Stone (number 115). Layla is considered one of Clapton’s most outstanding achievements.

If you haven’t heard this concert in a while, grab a seat and get comfy. A little history is always good to have around.

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