“I’ll be with you darling soon…”
So go the lyrics to the Cream song “Sunshine of Your Love.” A cover band with ties to famous guitarist and Cream member Eric Clapton will perform to a South Orange County audience soon when they perform at The Coach House in San Juan Capistrano on April 29.
The Cream of Clapton Band performs renditions of songs by the namesake acts and is fronted by Will Johns, Clapton’s nephew. Noah East—the son of Clapton’s bass player, Nathan East—plays keyboards.
Rounding out the band is drummer Dylan Elise, from another accomplished band, Blood, Sweat & Tears, and bassist and vocalist Steve Ball.
“Of course, we will be playing classics like ‘Cocaine’, ‘Sunshine of Your Love’, ‘Badge’ and ‘Layla’,” Johns said. “But there are many great songs that haven’t been performed for some time from the gold- and platinum-selling albums Behind the Sun, August, and Journeyman, which ultimately led to Eric’s record-breaking 24-night residency at the Royal Albert Hall.”
For many fans, Clapton is known as the guitarist behind “After Midnight” and other popular classic rock songs, but Johns knows him as “Uncle Eric,” with whom he has spent time fishing. In addition to having Clapton as an uncle, Johns’ father, Andy Johns, was a producer and engineer for Jimi Hendrix and Van Halen, among other famous rock acts.
“Eric and I went fishing recently, and one of the first things he said was, ‘So I hear you and Nathan’s son are going on tour playing my music?’” Johns said. “When I asked him if he was all right with that, he told me, to my absolute delight, that he was honoured. It means the world to me to have his blessing.”
East has also been surrounded by music his whole life, having played piano since he was 4 years old and listening to his father play with Clapton growing up.
“I just couldn’t pass up the opportunity to play Eric’s music in a style like this, with such amazing musicians,” East said. “Being so closely tied with the actual band, I think we’re going to be able to capture the true essence of the music, because we’ve been around it our whole lives.”
Nathan East will join his son on stage in San Diego, where the band is scheduled to play after the San Juan Capistrano date.
In addition to playing the radio staples people know and love, Cream of Clapton will also share anecdotes about what growing up around Clapton was like.
The band has been playing in Germany to kick off its current tour, prior to the North American dates.
What: The Cream of Clapton Band
When: Sunday, April 29. Doors open at 6 p.m.; concert starts at 8 p.m.
Where: 33157 Camino Capistrano, San Juan Capistrano
For tickets or more info: thecoachhouse.com. Tickets are $30.