Blind Faith was the first band tagged as a "supergroup," but probably the second actual "supergroup" to Eric Clapton's previous band Cream. Blind Faith was a one-year experiment for it's members, and they produced only one album that is arguably both excellent and mediocre. Even though their album production pales by today’s comparisons, they did seem to start off the "supergroup" meme of the late 60's and early 70's. The band was highly publicized in the icon-hungry media, and this may have accelerated the bands quick rise and fall.
It all started with Clapton. He was looking to get together with Winwood. For some reason, Winwood was considered this fantastic musician back then. Everyone wanted to play with him, even Hendrix and Clapton. If you listen to Winwood now you wonder why? But I digress... So in late 1968, Clapton brings Winwood to his house in Surrey, where they rehearsed for a few weeks. They eventually invited Baker to play with them, although against Clapton's wishes. Clapton had just finished with Cream and was looking to reinvent his sound. He most likely wanted some closure and felt inviting Baker along was just like returning to Cream.
In May of 1968, still without a name, they invite Grech to the band, and he leaves Family during their US tour. Grech leaving a large tour would not go unnoticed, and the band expected the media explosion. In anticipation of the massive attention, they dub themselves "Blind Faith" and begin as the first "supergroup" to receive the adoring attention of the media.
Through May and June of 1969, the band records an album of six total songs, titled Blind Faith, lasting roughly 42 minutes:
- Had To Cry Today
- Can't Find My Way Home
- Well All Right
- Presence Of The Lord
- Sea Of Joy
- Do What You Like
June 7, 1969, Blind Faith made their public debut at Hyde Park in London. It is estimated that between 100,000-150,000 people attended the show. The concert was free. The album, released on the Polydor label in the UK, and the Atco label in the US, hit stores on June 22 1969. The original album sleeve had a picture of a very young nude girl holding an elongated model airplane on the front cover. The album cover is considered inappropriate for American audiences, and is changed to a generic band photo for US release. The band immediately begins a live US tour that debuts at Madison Square Garden, and has over 20 scheduled stops. The entire tour lasts two months and completely sells out. The tour earns the band a fortune, but receives the dubious distinction as "one of the tackiest rock circuses of all time." Blind Faith ends the tour unsatisfied.
Before the tour ended in late September, the album hits number one on both the US and UK pop charts, and is awarded a Gold Album. The US tour ended September 29 1969, and on October 8 the band announced they would part ways.
While lasting really less than 6 months, Blind Faith managed to create some excellent music. Not all tracks on Blind Faith are even worth a listen, but "Can't Find My Way Home" is a superb song. It's neither Cream nor Traffic, but it's something special. "Sea of Joy" and "Had To Cry Today" are great as well, but the rest of the album is fairly weak, and lacks identity. It is very obvious that the both the blues feel of Traffic and the long, drawn out solo-soliloquy styles of Cream are heavy influences on the album style.