Eric’s fourth solo album celebrated both his rekindled creativity and some wonderful musical collaborations. No Reason To Cry, Eric Clapton’s fourth solo album, was released on August 27, 1976. It is a record that he has used to demonstrate his fresh motivation. “I spend my time listening to people and being heavily influenced by them,” he told Sounds magazine upon the release of the album. “Then comes recording time, and I go down to the studio, try something new, and it comes out as me again.” That was exactly what his adoring admirers wanted. The new album, which followed Eric’s victorious, US chart-topping 461 Ocean Boulevard set in 1974, There’s One In Every Crowd the following year, and the live album E.C. Was Here, was a celebration of both his refueled creativity and some excellent musical partnerships. No Reason To Cry was recorded in The Band’s Shangri-La studios in March 1976, with the revered Canadian-American group’s personal cooperation. Rick Danko and Richard Manuel composed the album’s relaxing opener, “Beautiful Thing,” while Danko co-authored the powerful “All Our Past Times” with Clapton and supplied a superb vocal part.
Then who should turn up than Bob Dylan, not only to sing a duet with “Slowhand,” but also to donate “Sign Language,” a new, unpublished work of his. That song is featured in a separate article on Eric’s “Knockin’ On Heaven’s Door” single. Some of Eric’s British pals also featured strongly, with guitars by Ronnie Wood and keyboards by Georgie Fame. Other contributors included trusted confidants such as Yvonne Elliman, Billy Preston, Jesse Ed Davis, and Marcy Levy, later of course to find huge chart success of her own as one half of Shakespear’s Sister. Levy and Dick Sims wrote the album’s penultimate number, “Hungry.” It’s an album with an admirably live “band” feel to it, no pun intended, and features some exceptional playing by Clapton, never better than on a brilliantly brooding version of Otis Rush’s “Double Trouble.” On Apple Music and Spotify, you can listen to the finest of Eric Clapton. There is no reason… soared to No.8 in the UK, No.10 in Denmark and Holland, and No.15 in the US chart after a strong 21-week run. Clapton was unconcerned about hit singles at the time, but his own piece “Hello Old Friend” reached No.24 on the album. In the Sounds interview, Clapton commented on the album’s rootsy feel, saying of his fans, “I don’t really think they want a heavy metal album.” At the very least, I hope they don’t, because they won’t be able to acquire it any longer. That kind of thing has passed me by. “I don’t think it will last.”