The Class of 1970: ‘Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs’
When Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs was released November 9, 1970, the album was at first regarded like The Masked Marauders. Who the hell are Derek and the Dominos. In fact, when they toured immediately after finishing the album October 2, many venues just posted the name without saying “this is Eric Clapton’s new band.” It was for certain like that when they played The Electric Factory in Philadelphia October 16-17. None of the shows sold out, and you could stay for the second show if you were there for the first each night. [Ed. note: I was there both nights.]
Once it was marketed at Clapton’s new gig (buttons and stickers that proclaimed DEREK IS ERIC), it sold better, but only made it to #16 on the U.S. charts and didn’t hit the U.K. charts at all. It was considered a flop commercially and critically. Funny how time changes things.
This turned out to be the lone solo album from the group, who would later have two different versions of live albums from their sets at The Fillmore East October 23-24. There was work on a second album, but it was never issued. Since then, the album came out on compact disk, and since then at least seven other deluxe and expanded reissues have appeared.
Now Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs will get the deluxe vinyl treatment to honor its 50 years in the collective rock mindset as one of the greatest rock albums of all time. The four-LP package was announced by UMe/Polydor.
Clapton rounded up the usual suspects from his time with Delaney and Bonnie and Friends — Bobby Whitlock, Carl Radle, and Jim Gordon — and played a few weeks in English clubs. Then they headed for Criteria Studios in Miami, where they worked from August 26 to September 10 and finished up October 1 & 2. Producer Tom Dowd was finishing work on Idlewild South.
Clapton heard The Allman Brothers were playing in town and insisted upon going. From Randy Poe’s book Skydog: The Duane Allman Story:
Allman later called Dowd to let him know that his band was in town to perform a benefit concert on 26 August. When Clapton learned of this he insisted on going to see their show, saying, “You mean that guy who plays on the back of (Wilson Pickett’s) ‘Hey Jude’? … I want to see him play … let’s go.” Stage hands seated Clapton and company in front of the barricade separating the audience from the stage. When they sat down, Allman was playing a solo. As he turned around and opened his eyes and saw Clapton, he froze. Dickey Betts, the Allmans’ other lead guitarist, picked up where Allman left off, but when he followed Allman’s eyes to Clapton, he had to turn his back to keep from freezing, himself.
You know the rest. Clapton insisted again, this time that Allman bring his guitar to the studio, ready to play. And Allman did, on 11 of the 14 tracks on the album.
This 50th anniversary reissue of Layla and Other Assorted Love Songs is on vinyl. Sides One, Two, Three and Four are the original album. This is a special Half-Speed Mastered version. Sides Five through Eight are filled with bonus material previously unreleased on vinyl. The set will also have a 12×12 booklet from the 40th anniversary release. uDiscover and The Sound of Vinyl are the only places to order this set.
I Looked Away
Bell Bottom Blues
Keep On Growing
Nobody Knows You When You’re Down And Out
I Am Yours
Key To The Highway
Tell The Truth
Why Does Love Got To Be So Sad?
Have You Ever Loved A Woman
It’s Too Late
Thorn Tree In The Garden
LP3 / LP4 – Bonus Material
(*denotes previously unreleased on vinyl)
Mean Old World – Layla Session Out-take
Roll It Over – Phil Spector Produced Single B-Side
Tell The Truth – Phil Spector Produced Single A-Side
It’s Too Late* – Live On The Johnny Cash TV Show, November 5, 1970
Got To Get Better In A Little While* – Live On The Johnny Cash TV Show, November 5, 1970
Matchbox with Johnny Cash & Carl Perkins* – Live On The Johnny Cash TV Show, November 5, 1970
Blues Power* – Live On The Johnny Cash TV Show, November 5, 1970
Snake Lake Blues* – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album
Evil* – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album
Mean Old Frisco* – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album
One More Chance* – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album
High – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album
Got To Get Better In A Little While Jam* – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album
Got To Get Better In A Little While* – From April/May 1971 Sessions For The Dominos’ Second Album