Eric Clapton, "I Still Do" (Bushbranch Records/Surfdog Records)
Not as if there were any doubt, but Eric Clapton knows how to play the blues.
And on the aptly-titled "I Still Do," the 71-year-old music legend proves it all over again with a smooth, sonically soothing mix of covers with a couple originals thrown in. He's not breaking any new ground here, or tearing the roof off with scorching guitar solos, but that's OK.
"I Still Do," just like Clapton, delivers.
Clapton reunites with famed producer Glyn Johns, who was also behind Clapton's most popular record "Slowhand." And the songs on "I Still Do" — with purring female backup singers and an economy of gently rollicking guitar licks — almost sound like outtakes from that 1977 classic that spawned "Wonderful Tonight" and "Lay Down Sally."
Clapton has always been an insightful interpreter of Bob Dylan's work, and he shows it again with his distinctive take on the relative obscurity from 1967 "I Dreamed I Saw St. Augustine."
Clapton closes with his cover of the standard "I'll Be Seeing You," which hopefully is a hint of more to come and not a farewell.