Eric Clapton tests positive for Covid, cancels shows

Eric Clapton onstage
Eric Clapton onstage at the Royal Albert Hall earlier this month (Image credit: Harry Herd/Getty Images)

Eric Clapton has cancelled two shows on his current European tour after testing positive for Covid-19. The news was broken in a statement on Clapton's Facebook page

The statement read: "Eric Clapton is unfortunately suffering from Covid having tested positive shortly after the second concert at the Royal Albert Hall [May 8]. He has been told by his medical advisors that if he were to resume traveling and performing too soon, it could substantially delay his full recovery. Eric is also anxious to avoid passing on any infection to any of his band, crew, promoters, their staff and of course the fans."

The two affected shows are the performances at the Hallenstadion in Zurich, Switzerland on May 17, and the following night's show at the Mediolanum Forum near Milan. Clapton plans to resume the tour in Bologna on May 20 and 21. The two cancelled shows are set to be rescheduled within the next six months, and tickets will remain valid.

The statement adds, "It is very frustrating that having avoided Covid throughout lockdown and throughout the period when travel restrictions have been in place, Eric should have succumbed to Covid at this point in time, but we very much hope he will be sufficiently recovered by the end of the week to be able to perform the remainder of the planned performances."

Last year Clapton made headlines after claiming that people who've chosen to be vaccinated against Covid may be victims of "mass formation hypnosis," a notion long debunked by academics. The guitarist received two doses of the AstraZeneca vaccine, but described the side-effects as "disastrous."

Eric Clapton has also announced a short run of North American shows for September, including two at New York's Madison Square Garden. Full dates below. Tickets for all shows are on sale now

Eric Clapton tour dates

May 20: 2022 Bologna Unipol Arena, Italy
May 21: 2022 Bologna Unipol Arena, Italy
May 29: Berlin Waldbühne, Germany
May 31: Stuttgart Hanns Martin Schleyerhalle, Germany
Jun 02: Munich Olympiahalle, Germany
Jun 05: Prague O2 Arena, Czech Republic
Jun 07: Amsterdam Ziggo Dome, Netherlands
Jun 08: Amsterdam Ziggo Dome, Netherlands
Jun 10: Dusseldorf PSD Bank Dome, Germany
Jun 12: Merksem Sportpaleis, Belgium
Jun 14: Copenhagen Royal Arena, Denmark
Jun 15: Copenhagen Royal Arena, Denmark
Jun 17: Tampere Nokia Arena, Finland 

Sep 08: Columbus Schottenstein Center, OH                
Sep 10: Detroit Little Caesars Arena, MI                       
Sep 12: Chicago United Center, IL                     
Sep 13: Chicago United Center, IL                     
Sep 16: Pittsburgh PPG Paints Arena, PA                
Sep 18: New York Madison Square Garden, NY                
Sep 18: New York Madison Square Garden, NY   

Fraser Lewry

Online Editor at Louder/Classic Rock magazine since 2014. 38 years in music industry, online for 25. Also bylines for: Metal Hammer, Prog Magazine, The Word Magazine, The Guardian, The New Statesman, Saga, Music365. Former Head of Music at Xfm Radio, A&R at Fiction Records, early blogger, ex-roadie, published author. Once appeared in a Cure video dressed as a cowboy, and thinks any situation can be improved by the introduction of cats. Favourite Serbian trumpeter: Dejan Petrović.