Legendary guitarist Eric Clapton said his musician friends stopped communicating with him after he recently spoke out about his "disastrous" COVID-19 side effects.
"I've tried to reach out to fellow musicians," Clapton said during a video Q&A mostly about his COVID-19 vaccine experience and his reaction to the powers-that-be afterward. "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."
Clapton's aforementioned statements come at the very end of the below video, just before the 24-minute mark — but the whole interview is pretty eye-opening:
Eric Clapton: Exclusive & Uncensored | Oracle Filmsyoutu.be
According to Vulture.com, Clapton also said, "I was ostracized. And I could feel that everywhere."
What else did Clapton say?
Clapton added that after speaking out he "did get some flack from the people I least wanted to get flack from," but on the positive side he welcomed the prospect of "becoming a nuisance for [political leaders]. I'd love to be an annoyance to some of them that sit 'round that table; that would give me tremendous satisfaction."
He also called out the pro-lockdown, pro-vaccine contingent's use of "propaganda" and their "making it so that you're responsible for other people's lives" if you don't do everything you're told to do: "I could be labeled a murderer, and people would really believe that."
Clapton — who added that he'd been reading George Orwell's dystopian novel "1984" over the course of lockdowns and vaccine pressures — said such propaganda is "powerful" and "very clever."
What's the background?
Rolling Stone reported that Clapton got an initial AstraZeneca vaccine shot in February.
"I took the first jab of AZ and straight away had severe reactions which lasted ten days," Clapton wrote in a letter about his experience, according to the magazine. "I recovered eventually and was told it would be twelve weeks before the second one…"
He added that "about six weeks later I was offered and took the second AZ shot, but with a little more knowledge of the dangers. Needless to say the reactions were disastrous, my hands and feet were either frozen, numb or burning, and pretty much useless for two weeks, I feared I would never play again," Rolling Stone said.
Clapton also shared in the letter that he suffers from "peripheral neuropathy and should never have gone near the needle" and that "the propaganda said the vaccine was safe for everyone," the magazine reported.
'Stand and Deliver'
Clapton also hit the headlines late last year for a related reason: an anti-lockdown song "Stand and Deliver" — penned by iconic vocalist Van Morrison and recorded and released by Clapton.
As you might imagine the guitarist took a lot of grief from the left over the tune — as did Morrison.
Stand and Deliver by Eric Clapton - Music from The state51 Conspiracyyoutu.be
Clapton said in the letter that "I found my voice" after being directed to Morrison and his new music, the magazine reported.
"And even though I was singing his words, they echoed in my heart," Clapton added in his letter, according to Rolling Stone. "I recorded 'Stand and Deliver' in 2020 and was immediately regaled with contempt and scorn."
The magazine noted that Clapton said in a statement that accompanied the song: "There are many of us who support Van and his endeavors to save live music; he is an inspiration. We must stand up and be counted because we need to find a way out of this mess. The alternative is not worth thinking about. Live music might never recover."
Last September, a Northern Ireland health minister labeled Morrison's anti-lockdown songs "dangerous." His tunes — "Born to Be Free," "As I Walked Out," and "No More Lockdown" — reportedly targeted the U.K. government for using COVID-19 lockdowns to "enslave" the people.
And he wasn't through by a long shot.
"Remember, those who are shutting down our economy haven't missed a paycheck since lockdown began," Morrison tweeted to his nearly 66,000 followers in December before adding a mocking zinger. "We are not in this together."