An Amusement & Diversion for The Genteel Cyclist. Daily.

Monday, August 6, 2007

In your ear, Eric Clapton!

That white English dude who got famous playing black American blues--Eric Clapton--was an enthusiastic cyclist as a lad. That's apparently a photo of his Cinelli Special Corsa over there on your left.

Like a charming, furtive groupie, "ex framebuilder" Dave Moulton has crawled Clapton's personal blog and discovered a few crumbs of edification like that, and others.

Eric Clapton, in his youth, rode a bike as well as played guitar; he even raced a little and rode a few time-trials.

The guitar became his number one passion and won out over the bicycle, but the bicycle keeps popping up now and then throughout his life and career. In his early days with Cream he made an album called Disraeli Gears.

The story goes that one day in the recording studio Eric was telling the other band members about his bike racing and his road bike. One of them asked, “Did it have those Disraeli gears?”

This was quite funny because what he really meant was derailleur gears. Benjamin Disraeli was a British prime minister in the 1800s during Queen Victoria’s reign. This is how, the now famous album, got its name.

Perhaps its the fact that Moulton is himself loudly and proudly retired that leads to his odd assertion that Clapton is a "former" cyclist. Aside from personal evidence to the contrary, why must bikes and guitars be mutually exclusive? I should think anyone who is still sound in mind, body, and inner ear should be able to climb aboard any average two-wheeler and pick up where he left off. Hence the old saying. Like riding a bike.


bother yam said...

it was the drugs, dude. much more interesting to him than any ol' bike...

Dave Moulton said...

Vintage guitars are often bought as an investment, sometimes by people who can’t play them.

Vintage bicycles are seldom bought as an investment, and are only bought by bicycle enthusiasts.

Pinchie said...

Dave, surely that will change. Check Richard Bryne's insane refurbishing and cloning projects with his Masi's.

Judging by how quickly any good lugged bike gets scooped at grage sales around the twin cities these days, and the consignment sales at the bike studio across the alley... well, i'd say that collectors have begun...

Pinchie said...

but of course riding a bike is much easier than playing a guitar (well)

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