Nietzsche once said not to be afraid to dig deep as there lies the truth.
In such a manner, we discovered a weird story. The story is about Eric Clapton’s small trip to Greece in the summer of 1965, a dark period not only for music.
The legend was not born a legend… He became one through the years. but one must first go through hell to reach heaven, and sometimes there is not only one kind of hell.
The adventure of the great -soon to be- guitarist starts shortly before summer in rainy England.
The Yardbirds-an older band he used to play with- struggle for the public acceptance of the song “For your love” as well as for their latest album, in which Eric Clapton unwillingly played as the rest of the band simply tolerated him due to their lack of guitar player.
Disappointed, he tries to work with John Mayall but even with this cooperation, he does not find the acceptance he needs as his name does not even appear in the few singles of Mayall.
Having nothing to lose, he decides with some other musicians to travel around Europe and play wherever they stop in order to make little money to continue the trip.
The band was named Glands, but in Greece, they play under the name Faces and as The Greek Loon Band!!!!
By the time they arrive at a beer festival in Germany, problems begin to rise as they engage in a fight due to Bob Rae’s silliness to light a cigarette with a 5-pounds note.
Following that, they continue their trip, but in Italy, their drummer falls in love with an Italian girl abandoning them for love.
Τhe road leads to Greece
Reaching Yugoslavia, a country famous for its then “rocky” roads their car breaks in two and they continue with an improvised solution on the bumpy roads until they reach Thessaloniki. Because of their hunger, they eat raw meat bought from a butcher.
Eventually, they arrive in Athens in August of 1965.
In Athens, they work at the Igloo club, as a support group for Junior’s band. Their shows gain public acceptance and Makis Saliaris becomes the band’s drummer.
Unfortunately, in October, Juniors’ organist, Thanos Sugiul, and guitarist, Alekos Karakantas got killed in a car accident.
Wanting both of the groups to continue the shows, the owner of the club asks Clapton to play both for his band and for the Juniors for up to six hours every night.
The crowd loves Eric playing for Juniors in Peiraia in front of 10.000 people in a concert in honor of the wrongful loss of Sugiul.
However, Clapton’s friends become cranky as they cannot stand greek reality, deciding to return to rainy England.
They secretly leave with the help of Makis Saliaris, as the owner of the club threatened him that if they try to leave, he will cut his hands… and he meant it.
The guitarist manages to save his hands but he loses his guitar and his amplifier. Αnd the only contact that they ever have is with the temporary drummer of their band when another member of the group sent a letter to their savior to ask him money for the guitar and the amplifier.
Πηγή: “Clapton: The Autobiography”