Eric Clapton’s “Wonderful Tonight” is without a doubt one of the most romantic songs of all time. Its emotional lyrics combined with a distinctive guitar riff absolutely caught everyone’s attention.
The love song was one of the songs included on Clapton’s 1977 album Slowhand. The singer-songwriter wrote it about his relationship with Pattie Boyd, one of the leading international models in the 1960s, whom Clapton would later marry.
Eric Clapton felt inspired while waiting around for his then-girlfriend as she was trying out different clothes, getting ready for a night out. The two would be heading out Paul and Linda McCartney’s annual tribute party for Buddy Holly.
In 2008, Boyd revealed to The Guardian that the singer “was sitting around playing his guitar while I was trying on dresses upstairs.”
“I was taking so long, and I was panicking about my hair, my clothes, everything, and I came downstairs expecting him to really berate me,” she continued. “But he said, ‘Listen to this!'”
“It’s late in the evening. She’s wondering what clothes to wear. She puts on her makeup, and brushes her long blonde hair. And then she asks me, ‘Do I look alright?’ And I say, ‘Yes, you look wonderful tonight,'” the “Wonderful Tonight” lyrics begin.
Clapton and Boyd married on March 27, 1979. The day after, the legendary rock icon brought Boyd on stage and sang “Wonderful Tonight” to her at his concert in Tucson, Arizona.
Pattie Boyd Inspired Some Of The Most Romantic Love Songs
The Taunton-born model was the muse to some of the most iconic ballads in the 1960s. When Eric Clapton first met Pattie Boyd, she was married to Beatles’ lead guitarist George Harrison – who wrote “Something” and “For You Blue” for Boyd.
Clapton had no choice but to admire her from a distance and write songs for her like “Layla,” which was based on the 12th-century poem, The Story of Layla and Majnun by the classical poet Nizami Ganjavi. The Story of Layla and Majnun tells the tale of a young man who found himself madly in love with a gorgeous woman. Unfortunately, she’s no longer available, and he got frustrated day by day because he could not marry her.
Boyd remained married to Harrison until 1977. However, their marriage became flawed due to Harrison’s infidelity, and it slowly crumbled, reaching the point of no return. Once Boyd was free, she had grown close to Clapton. The two began dating and eventually moved in together in 1979.
Sadly, after many years of a happy marriage, the two encountered several struggles. Boyd discovered that the singer had started cheating on her, and it mostly happened during his tours.
“It was horrible. It was a stab in the heart, horrible,” Boyd said when she found out about Clapton’s infidelity. Eventually, the strain took its toll.
What the public believed to be one of a solid marriage in the industry ended in a divorce.
You can listen to Eric Clapton’s “Wonderful Tonight” in the video below.