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Eric Clapton
b. March 30, 1945

Nicknamed "Slowhand", is a Grammy Award winning English guitarist, singer and composer, who became one of the most respected and influential musicians of the rock-era. Eric Clapton is widely considered to be one of the greatest and most influential guitarists in music history.

Although Clapton's musical style has varied throughout his career, it has always remained rooted in the blues. Clapton is credited as an innovator in several

phases of his career, which have included blues-rock, hard rock, delta blues, rock, pop and reggae.

Influenced by the blues from an early age, at age thirteen, Clapton received an acoustic guitar for his birthday, but he found learning the instrument so difficult he nearly gave up. After high school, Clapton studied stained-glass design, but was later kicked out of school for playing his guitar during class. Clapton joined his first band at seventeen and stayed with this band, The Roosters - from January through to August 1963. During his time with the band, Clapton frequently jammed in London clubs with future members of the Rolling Stones. Clapton did a seven-gig stint with Casey Jones and the Engineers, a Top 40 band, in September 1963.

Clapton joined The Yardbirds, in 1963 and stayed with them until 1965. Synthesizing influences from Chicago blues and leading blues guitarists such as B.B. King and Freddie King, Clapton forged a distinctive style and he rapidly became one of the most talked-about guitarists in the British music scene. Some of the bands Eric Clapton performed with prior to his solo career are: Cream, Blind Faith, Derek and the Dominos, and the ground-breaking, John Mayall’s Blues Breakers album.

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