Eric Clapton Plays on Newly Reimagined ‘My Father’s Eyes’

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Pedrito Martinez and Eric Clapton

Eric Clapton has joined Cuban-born percussionist Pedrito Martinez on a reimagined duet version of the classic rock legend’s 1998 release, “My Father’s Eyes.” The widely respected Latin musician had the idea in early 2019 to put together an updated recording of Clapton’s deeply personal song and sent it to the three-time inducted Rock & Roll Hall of Fame member for his thoughts.

Upon receiving the initial recording, Clapton invited the innovative musician to London last year to work together, where he added his own vocals and guitar to the track.

Clapton first released “My Father’s Eyes” on 1998’s Pilgrim, his 13th solo studio album. The song was inspired by Clapton’s own life: he never met his father, Edward Fryer. It also makes reference to the death of Clapton’s young son, Conor. “My Father’s Eyes” went on to earn the Grammy Award for Best Pop Male Vocal Performance.

Listen to Pedrito Martinez’s recording of “My Father’s Eyes” (featuring Eric Clapton)

The song is available for download here, or via the Amazon link below.

From the collaboration’s Aug. 21 announcement: Having the opportunity to work closely with Clapton is the fulfillment of a longtime dream for Martinez that had its roots at New York City’s Guantanamera restaurant, where Pedrito’s group got started, and where Clapton was a frequent guest.

Clapton has provided additional guitar contributions to two more songs that will be included in Martinez’s upcoming album, Acertijos, expected to be released in early 2021.

Watch a behind-the-scenes clip of the recording session

Martinez has also recorded or performed with Wynton Marsalis, Paul Simon, Bruce Springsteen, and Sting, among others, and has contributed, as a percussionist and vocalist, to over 50 albums. He now leads the Pedrito Martinez Group.

He was born in Havana, Cuba, on Sept. 12, 1973.

Of Martinez, The New York Times has written, “among his peers, Pedrito Martinez is firmly established as a source of rhythmic delight and inspiration. he is as close as traditional Afro-Cuban music has to a superstar.”

Clapton’s most recent release is a 20th anniversary edition of his collaboration with B.B. King, Riding With the King.

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