Give Eric Clapton A Knighthood
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Eric Patrick Clapton, CBE is an English rock and blues guitarist, singer and songwriter. He is the only three-time inductee to the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame. Having sold over 40 million records in the United States and over 100 million worldwide, he is one of the best-selling artists of all time and one of the greatest and most influential musicians to ever exist. The recipient of 18 Grammy Awards and the Brit Award for Outstanding Contributions to Music, Clapton has made a major and significant contribution to music both in the United Kingdom as well as worldwide. Clapton has been featured in several "Best Guitarists Of All Time" and "Best Artists Of All Time" lists having been ranked number 2 on Rolling Stone Magazine's list of "100 Greatest Guitarists" and number 55 on their list of "100 Greatest Artists".
Clapton is respected worldwide and renowned as one of the best and most influential guitarists of all time having hits like Layla, Tears In Heaven, Wonderful Tonight, Crossroads, Sunshine Of Your Love, White Room, Badge, Change The World, I Shot The Sheriff, Bell Bottom Blues, Cocaine, Steppin' Out, Hideaway and many others. Before Clapton, there were guys like B.B. King, Albert Collins, Muddy Waters, Freddie King, Albert King, Chuck Berry, Buddy Guy, and while all of them had a tremendous influence on music and on the guitar, none of them had a greater impact on rock and blues guitar than Clapton. Clapton not only influenced all the blues guitarists that came after him but he was also the bridge connecting blues to rock. His blues-based sound is still the core of modern rock guitar.
"Maybe most important of all, he turned the amp up — to 11. That alone blew everybody's mind in the mid-Sixties. In the studio, he moved the mic across the room from the amp, which added ambience; everybody else was still close-miking. The guitar player suddenly became the most important guy in the band. " "Intellectually, Clapton was a purist, although there was little evidence of it in the beginning. When he soloed, he wrote wonderful symphonies from classic blues licks in that fantastic tone, with all of the resonance that comes from distortion. You could sing his solos like songs in themselves." "Anyone who plays lead guitar owes him a debt of gratitude. He wrote the fundamental language, the binary code, that everyone uses to this day." Layla is known as "Clapton's most original interpretation of the blues, because the hellhounds on his trail had a face: unrequited love."
Having been in several bands during his lifetime including The Yardbirds, Cream, Derek and the Dominos and Blind Faith and having covered numerous genres such as blues, hard rock, psychedelic, pop, blues rock, soft rock, acoustic, jazz, classical, reggae, etc.., Clapton has influenced more guitarists than anyone else. Bands and guitarists influenced/inspired by Cream and Eric Clapton alone stretch far and wide and they include but are not limited to; Jimi Hendrix, Led Zeppelin, Lynyrd Skynyrd, The Jeff Beck Group, Eddie Van Halen, Dire Straits, Mark Knopfler, Duane Allman, Joe Bonamassa, Van Halen, Ozzy Osbourne, AC/DC, Black Sabbath, Judas Priest, The Police, Stevie Ray Vaughan, Tony Iommi, Joe Walsh, The Eagles, Queen, Guns N' Roses, Slash, Aerosmith, The Allman Brothers, Kiss, Rush, Deep Purple, Ritchie Blackmore, Santana, Brian May, Joe Satriani, Scorpions and millions of others all around the world. His influence has been so-far reaching and long-lasting that even musicians of today were influenced by him, namely; Joe Bonamassa, John Mayer, Gary Clark Jr., Ed Sheeran, James Bay, etc..
Clapton is also the only guitarist, and probably the only musician to have had reverence from the original blues musicians, new blues musicians, rock musicians, pop musicians, metal musicians and people of all genres of music and has collaborated with them several times. He has collaborated with so many prominent musicians including; All four of The Beatles both individually and together, B.B. King, The Rolling Stones, Dire Straits, Luciano Pavarotti, Elton John, Bob Dylan, Phil Collins, Chuck Berry, Albert King, Jeff Beck, Jimmy Page, Buddy Guy and more. He has also gained respect and the massive appraisal of fellow musicians such as Jimi Hendrix, Jimmy Page, Pete Townshend and all the other musicians who collaborated with him, came before him and those who were influenced by him.
In addition to Clapton's influence and significant part in the evolution of music of the past 50 years, he has been involved in countless charitable events and concerts including but not limited to; UNICEF Peace For Christmas, Concert For Bangladesh, Live Aid, ARMS Concert, The Prince's Trust, Concert For New York, Tsunami Relief, Tsunami Aid, Concert For George and hundreds of others. Clapton has generated hundreds of millions of dollars for charities throughout his career. In addition to this, he also played at the Party At The Palace concert at the Buckingham Palace Garden in commemoration of the Golden Jubilee of Queen Elizabeth II held over the Golden Jubilee Weekend. Clapton also founded the Crossroads Centre, a drug and alcohol rehabilitation centre in Antigua in 1999 by selling over a hundred of his guitars at record prices to fund it. He also founded and organises the annual Crossroads Guitar Festival to further fund his Crossroads Center. The festival has had several famous and noteworthy performers throughout the years like B.B. King, Buddy Guy, John Mayer, Cheryl Crow, Bob Dylan, Jeff Beck and many more and is attended by fellow musicians and fans alike. His top quality, low-cost and highly positively rated center in Antigua has greatly helped in the recovery and healing of its' people and people from all over the world who seek treatment there.
In conclusion, for the above reasons and a million others, I strongly believe that Eric Clapton is long overdue and greatly deserves a knighthood.
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