Wednesday, January 23, 2013

"Tulsa Time/Cocaine" by Eric Clapton

Song#:  0225
Date:  06/21/1980
Debut:  74
Peak:  30
Weeks:  14
Genre:  Rock

Pop Bits:  Thanks to the demise of the physical single, a double-sided hit is now a thing of the past. When 45 singles ruled in the 50s and 60s, double-sided hits (where both the A and B-sides hit the chart either combined or separately) were not uncommon. By the 80s, they were a rare occurrence, but still happened. The first one of the 80s was this single from Clapton's live album "Just One Night." "Tulsa Time" was the A-side when it hit the chart, but within a couple of weeks the B-side of "Cocaine" proved just as popular and the songs were then listed as a combined entry on the chart. It continues to be one of his most enduring and popular songs.

ReduxReview:  I have to admit, I'm not the biggest fan of live recordings. There are exceptions of course, but overall it is very difficult to capture the experience in a recording. To me, the highlight of seeing Clapton would be his guitar work because he's not necessarily an engaging performer nor a powerful vocalist and I think these two songs highlight that for me. They are obviously well-performed, but I'd rather either be their in the audience or hear the studio versions.

ReduxRating:  5/10

Trivia:  Double Shot!  1) This was the second time that the song "Cocaine" appeared as a B-side on a Clapton single. The original studio version of the song first appeared as the flip-side of his "Lay Down Sally" single (#3, 1978).  2) "Cocaine" was written by J.J. Cale and it originally appeared on his 1976 album "Troubadour," while "Tulsa Time" was originally recorded  in 1978 by country artist Don Williams. It became his eighth #1 country hit.


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