16 Songs, 51 Minutes

EDITORS’ NOTES

Eric Clapton taps a wide-ranging roster of big names—including Dire Straits’ frontman Mark Knopfler, Tom Petty, and fiery blues guitarist Derek Trucks, among them—to cover the slow-burning tunes of pioneering songwriter JJ Cale. But the magic of The Breeze (An Appreciation of JJ Cale) lies not in star power, but cool-handed consistency. Clapton and company draw on material from Cale’s four-decade career to illustrate the country-inflected roots rock that defines the so-called Tulsa Sound that Cale helped create. Along the way, Clapton and Petty groove through a dusky version of “Rock & Roll Records,” John Mayer plays a reggae-tinted “Lies,” and Willie Nelson croons Cale’s lovely “Songbird.” Many of the album’s other highlights come from Cale’s former bandmate and fellow Tulsa guitarist/songwriter Don White, who plays with Knopfler and Clapton on a shuffling rendition of “Train to Nowhere.” Christine Lakeland and Derek Trucks close the tribute with a sublime reading of “Crying Eyes."

EDITORS’ NOTES

Eric Clapton taps a wide-ranging roster of big names—including Dire Straits’ frontman Mark Knopfler, Tom Petty, and fiery blues guitarist Derek Trucks, among them—to cover the slow-burning tunes of pioneering songwriter JJ Cale. But the magic of The Breeze (An Appreciation of JJ Cale) lies not in star power, but cool-handed consistency. Clapton and company draw on material from Cale’s four-decade career to illustrate the country-inflected roots rock that defines the so-called Tulsa Sound that Cale helped create. Along the way, Clapton and Petty groove through a dusky version of “Rock & Roll Records,” John Mayer plays a reggae-tinted “Lies,” and Willie Nelson croons Cale’s lovely “Songbird.” Many of the album’s other highlights come from Cale’s former bandmate and fellow Tulsa guitarist/songwriter Don White, who plays with Knopfler and Clapton on a shuffling rendition of “Train to Nowhere.” Christine Lakeland and Derek Trucks close the tribute with a sublime reading of “Crying Eyes."

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