Delaney & Bonnie And Friends with Eric Clapton & George Harrison – Copenhagen 12th December 1969 (no label)

Delaney & Bonnie - Copenhagen DVD

Copenhagen 12th December 1969 (no label)

Falkoner Theatre, Copenhagen, Denmark – December 12, 1969

(Appox. 45 min.) Poor Elijah/Tribute To Robert Johnson, I Don’t Know Why, Where There’s A Will There’s A Way, Special Life, I Don’t Want To Discuss It, That’s What My Man Is For, Comin’ Home, Tutti Frutti

Clapton’s history with Delaney & Bonnie goes back to the Blind Faith days. The Slowhand Tourography had this to say:

While Blind Faith had been on the road, they were supported by American white soul act Delaney and Bonnie. Eric began spending more and more time with Delaney and his band, traveling from gig to gig on their bus and popping up the stage during their sets. Clapton sponsored a tour for Delaney and Bonnie in November and played on stage with them. They started in Germany, and went on to the UK and Scandinavia.

The band, which consisted of Bobby Whitlock on keys, Carl Radle on bass, Jim Gordon on drums, Jim Price on trumpet, Bobby Keys on saxophone, Rita Coolidge on backing vocals, and Billy Preston on keyboards, is on fire during this performance. Clapton’s presence most definitely brought an excitement to this lineup and while George Harrison adds to the curiosity factor, he plays little more than support guitar in the background. Knowing now what this cast of players would go on to do, this makes for one very interesting watch.

After this short chapter in Eric Clapton’s career, his relationship with core members Bobby Whitlock, Carl Radle, and Jim Gordon would eventually spawn Clapton’s next project, Derek & The Dominos.

The film footage presented here from Copenhagen comes from a very clean pro-shot albeit black & white source. The picture is near perfect while the audio comes from a very good to excellent sounding line recording. The mix, for the most part, is very good but the vocals at times causes some distortion while during other times are low in the mix. These few minor faults certainly don’t take away from the enjoyment of seeing this historic concert.

Performance-wise this features a nice mix of covers and a few original compositions including “I Don’t Know Why” recently recorded for Eric Clapton’s self-titled debut LP. “Where There’s A Will, There’s A Way” opens with some harmony guitars from Eric and Delaney, features lead vocals from Bonnie and Jim Gordon lays down a great funky groove in the middle, definitely one of the highlights. Bonnie sings some nice blues in “That’s What My Man Is For” but perhaps one of the coolest moments here is seeing Clapton and George Harrison playing harmony guitars in “Coming Home”.

The DVD is packaged in a standard clam shell case. Any fan of Clapton or Derek & The Dominos will certainly want this in their collection, especially from such a clean source as this. The only negative I can find for this release would be the short 45 minute running time with no bonus material. Other than that, this is definitely recommended.

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