49 Years Ago: Blind Faith Make Their Big Debut To The Tune Of Over 100,000 Screaming Fans
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Hyde Park, 1969
Forged from the remnants of classic rock giants Cream and Traffic, Blind Faith was only with us for a short time – a year if you count the months spent preparing for their June 1969 debut, less than 6 months with their first and final album and tour – but the mark they left on the world with classics like “Can’t Find My Way Home” and “Presence Of The Lord” proved to be indelible. Their free concert at London’s Hyde Park drew a crowd of over 100,000 fans who turned out in droves for Blind Faith’s 8 song set, and closing out the band’s wildly successful debut was “Had To Cry Today” – the bluesy, riff-heavy opener to Blind Faith’s self-entitled debut album and possibly one of vocalist Steve Winwood’s best vocal performances ever.
Fun Fact: The performance was well received by fans there, but troubled Clapton, who thought that the band’s playing was sub-par.
Where “Can’t Find My Way Home” drew an insane response from the crowd that day, “Had To Cry Today” was a jam that rendered the audience of 100,000 strong silent – all desperately excited to see Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker sharing the stage with Winwood and Family bassist Ric Grech yet terrified to miss out on a single note of Clapton’s guitar work or Winwood’s soaring vocals.
Though Blind Faith would effectively dissolve within months of their debut, this moment in time proved to be an intensely special moment in rock music’s rich history, and it’s one that will definitely take you back to rock’s glory days!