Did Eric Clapton write 'Cocaine'? Donald Trump Jr jokes lead to singer's racism and song's history resurfacing

In a rant during a 1976 show, Clapton had said 'England is for white people, man' in an expletive-ridden tirade. It was the same year that 'Cocaine' had come out. But Clapton wasn't the one who wrote it


                            Did Eric Clapton write 'Cocaine'? Donald Trump Jr jokes lead to singer's racism and song's history resurfacing
Eric Clapton performs onstage during Music For The Marsden 2020 at The O2 Arena on March 03, 2020, in London, England (Getty Images)

On Tuesday, January 19, Eric Clapton was trending on Twitter. His old racist rants had resurfaced again -- as they keep doing from time to time. In a rant during a 1976 show, Clapton had said, "The black w**s and c***s and Arabs and f***ing Jamaicans don’t belong here, we don’t want them here. This is England, this is a white country, we don’t want any black w**s and c***s living here. We need to make clear to them they are not welcome. England is for white people, man … This is Great Britain, a white country, what is happening to us, for f***’s sake? … Throw the w**s out! Keep Britain white!”

The 75-year-old British guitarist and singer-songwriter has indeed addressed his past comments. In a 2018 interview, Clapton called himself a “semi-racist” and reflected on his addictions in the mid-1970s which damaged his life, relationships, and career. He said in the interview, “I sabotaged everything I got involved with. I was so ashamed of who I was, a kind of semi-racist, which didn't make sense. Half of my friends were black, I dated a black woman and I championed black music.”

English singer and guitarist Eric Clapton appears in Eric Clapton's Rainbow Concert at the Rainbow Theatre, London, 13th January 1973. He is playing a Gibson Les Paul Standard named 'Lucy', a gift from George Harrison. (Photo by P. Floyd/Express/Hulton Archive/Getty Images)

 

Many Twitter users called Clapton racist, sharing sections of the aforementioned rant. Many also pointed out the irony that "despite all of his reliance on black blues, it turns out he was a racist."



 

 



 

 



 

But what made Eric Clapton trend? 

A video of Donald Trump Jr. and Kimberly Guilfoyle, where the former is wearing a stars-and-stripes jacket, is making the rounds. The two can be heard shouting, overzealously, “The best is yet to come.” Some Twitter users quoted lyrics from ‘Cocaine’ and shared the video as a joke. This is not the first time that the internet has speculated on Trump Jr.’s use of cocaine or other narcotic substances. Videos from the 2020 Republican National Convention and even others shared by Trump Jr. have time and again turned this into a running gag of sorts.

To this, a Twitter user wrote, “So sad that Eric Clapton is trending, apparently because of the very mockworthy stars and stripes sports coated pharmaceutical-grade hyperstimulated video of Jr and demon-woman. The song, Cocaine, was written by JJ Cale, not E.C.”



 



 



 

This led to many figuring out that ‘Cocaine’, which appeared on his 1977 album ‘Slowhand’, was not Clapton’s original song. A Twitter user wrote, “It shouldn't be assumed that just because someone sang a song, that they wrote it. At least some people learned something new today.”



 



 



 

The song ‘Cocaine’ and J.J. Cale

‘Cocaine’ was written and recorded in 1976 by singer-songwriter J. J. Cale. But the talented singer-songwriter was a publicity-shy man. A self-taught guitarist, Cale first heard Eric Clapton on the radio singing ‘After Midnight’ in 1970 -- a song he had written and released four years earlier. “I couldn’t give that record away,” he told The Los Angeles Times in 1988. “It stiffed so bad.”

But Clapton has over the years given Cale a lot of credit for his music. In his 2007 autobiography, Clapton called him “one of the most important artists in the history of rock, quietly representing the greatest asset his country has ever had.” In 2008, he and Clapton won a Grammy for their album ‘The Road to Escondido’.

In fact, Clapton is not the only musician who has covered Cale. Waylon Jennings covered ‘Louisiana Women’, Carlos Santana played ‘Sensitive Kind’ and Randy Crawford has played ‘Cajun Moon’. In 2009, Cale said in an interview that three of his songs, ‘After Midnight’ and ‘Cocaine’ and Lynyrd Skynyrd’s cover of ‘Call Me the Breeze’ provided about 80 percent of his income.

Cale died in July 2013 from a heart attack. 

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