Eric Clapton – Going To Kansas Show (Slunky 06A/B)

 Going To Kansas Show (Slunky 06A/B)

Municipal Auditorium, Kansas City, MO – July 10th, 1975

Disc 1 (48:22):  Introduction, Layla, Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out, Singing The Blues, Give Me Strength, Can’t Find My Way Home, Further On Up The Road

Disc 2 (31:20):  Better Make It Through Today, Don’t Know What To Do / Badge, Kansas City, Teach Me To Be Your Woman, Blues Power

Eric Clapton’s visit to Kansas City occurs right in the middle of the big summer tour of the U.S. in 1975.  In a tour where he reached a high level of excellence, he delivers an exceptional set in one of the homes of the American blues which inspired him. 

Going To Kansas Show on the Clapton dedicated Slunky label contains the soundboard recording for that date.  It is very clear and powerful but with slight traces of hiss in the higher frequencies.  Another release, Solid Rockupation (Watchtower WT 2002069/70/71) contains part of this tape including “Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out,” “Singing The Blues,” “Give Me Strength,” “Better Make It Through Today,” “Kansas City,” “Teach Me To Be Your Woman” and “Blues Power” along with tracks from other shows on this tour.

Slunky press the entire tape on disc, but it’s unfortunately incomplete.  It has a cut when the power goes out after “Better Make It Through The Day” missing the “Feeling Alright” acoustic interlude.  The tape also cuts out 1:14 in “Blues Power” eliminating the segue into “Stormy Monday,” “Tell The Truth” and “Keep On Growin’.”  

A very good audience tape has surfaced with the complete concert and would make an excellent silver release, either on its own or as filler for the soundboard recording.

At the start the mc introduces Clapton.  And Clapton speaks about his keyboard player having diarrhea before ripping into “Layla.”  Long and improvisational, he is in a mood to jam long and often tonight and does so at any opportunity.  

“Singing The Blues,” one of only two songs from the latest album There’s One In Every Crowd released the previous March, is stretched to fifteen minutes.  And unlike some long versions, it’s not due to keyboards or repetitive riffs, but from Clapton twisting the song’s melody into many different directions.  

After “Give Me Strength” Clapton take a short break for Yvonne Elliman to sing “Can’t Find My Way Back Home.”  She even adds police whistle to the mix by the end.  “Further On Up The Road,” a popular encore number for Clapton, makes its way into the middle of the show.  Clapton introduces the song as being from 1957, recorded by Billy Bland on Duke Records (“shows how old I am” he jokes).  

A beautiful “Better Make It Through Today,” another new song, the power goes out.  It comes back on while they are  jamming on the “Badge” riff singing “Don’t Know What To Do.”  When they do finally play the classic song, Elliman again pulls our her police whistle and adds it into the mix.  This is probably the first and only Clapton show where the whistle is used as a musical instrument. 

Marcy Levy has her spot afterwards.  She thanks the audience for their patience since “all the power went out before.”  She sings a bit of the Stoller/Lieber song “Kansas City” and changes the lyric “they got a crazy way of loving there / And I’m gonna get me some” to “you know they have some hot men there / and I’m gonna get me one.” 

Levy sings one of her own songs “Teach Me To Be Your Woman.”  It’s one of her best written songs and this performance is so gentle and emotional that it comes close to stealing the show.  The emotion is so overwhelming that it prompts Clapton to quip “the problem is there isn’t anyone man enough for her.” 

It is a shame the show cuts out in the beginning of “Blues Power.”  It’s a tight, powerful performance and it would be interesting to hear how the show ends.  Perhaps the audience tape will make its way onto silver disc someday. 

Slunky provide very basic artwork for the release.  With minimal mastering on the tape, it’s very enjoyable and a good way to obtain the soundboard.  Kansas City is such a good show that it deserves the deluxe, definitive treatment sometime in the future. 

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