Maybe the second Van Morrison collab was their breaking point. Several months after Eric Clapton first began spreading coronavirus misinformation, which recently culminated in an anti-vaccination and anti-lockdown crusade, the musician admitted that his coterie of famous pals have begun to cut off communication with him. “I’ve tried to reach out to fellow musicians,” he explained during an interview with YouTube free-speech channel Oracle Films, which, for editorial purposes, we’re going to imagine was, like, Steve Winwood and Jimmy Page. “I just don’t hear from them anymore. My phone doesn’t ring very often. I don’t get that many texts and emails any more. It’s quite noticeable … I was ostracized. And I could feel that everywhere.”
Clapton reiterated that, although he decided to get a COVID vaccination for the sake of his children, he had “disastrous” reactions to the AstraZeneca vaccine that made him question the inherent good of jabs. “I feared I would never play again. I suffer with peripheral neuropathy and should never have gone near the needle,” he added. “But the propaganda said the vaccine was safe for everyone.” In May, Clapton used the same “propaganda” argument in an open letter obtained by Rolling Stone, in which he praised conspiratorial-leaning YouTube channels and the work he released with Morrison. “It’s hard to bite my tongue with what I now know,” he added about his theories. Suddenly, all of the southern stops on Clapton’s 2021 tour make total sense.