Eric Clapton has done little to ingratiate himself onto younger generations he’s progressively getting to be as known for being a curmudgeon as he is for “Layla.” One of his contemporaries, Queen’s Brian May, just had some harsh words for him.
Bad look For Clapton
Clapton has earned negative press and ire in recent years for his support of Brexit, and his stance against COVID-19 vaccination. He and Van Morrison collaborated on a single opposing lockdown, so this is not something he’s trying to hide. He’s proud of his stance and refuses to play for crowds with any COVID-19 safety measures in place. This stance, in the face of over four million deaths around the world, is extremely dangerous.
Queen’s Brian May took notice. A strong vaccine advocate, May took the “Tears In Heaven” singer to task in an interview with The Independent. “I love Eric Clapton, he’s my hero,” May said, “but he has very different views from me in many ways. He’s a person who thinks it’s OK to shoot animals for fun, so we have our disagreements.”
May then called anti-vax people “fruitcakes” adding, “There’s always going to be some side effect in any drug you take, but to go around saying vaccines are a plot to kill you, I’m sorry, that goes in the fruitcake jar for me.” May calling Clapton out by name is significant, as the Cream guitar player is one of England’s most famous people opposing vaccination.
Not The Only One
Clapton’s reputation has taken a hit in recent years. Phoebe Bridgers called him out on “Moon Song” and later said, “I have such an Eric Clapton rant because I think it’s just extremely mediocre music, but also he’s a famous racist.” Clapton has spewed many racist rants, including one where he pleaded to “Keep Britain white!” Jameela Jamil took him to task for these regressive views.
It’s kinda shocking to see a brand new rock beef between two rock and roll stalwarts, but that’s how things are in the age of COVID-19. It remains to be seen if Clapton will respond to May’s comments, but there’s zero chance he changes his mind or his ways. Clapton is still set to tour the United States this autumn, and given his views, it’s safe to say those shows won’t get canceled.
Clapton will still go down in history as one of the greatest guitarists who’s ever lived, but his latest act is already souring his legacy.