Eric Clapton, who famously battled alcohol problems himself, has said that the death of DJ and producer Avicii has left him in fear for young musicians who who he believes receive no assistance in dealing with their lifestyle.
In a statement following his passing at the age of 28 last April, Avicii's family said that the young DJ had suffered "extreme stress" and was "not made for the machinery he ended up in."
As tribute, Clapton recorded a version of Jingle Bells in a house music style - subtitled In Memory of Avicii - for his Christmas album Happy Xmas.
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"I wanted a house track. I was inspired by Avicii," Clapton says in a new promotional interview. "Terrible that he would die so young… That makes me worry about the current generation of musicians. They’re gonna get swept away with different substances or lifestyles, with no real guidance."
The Yuletide album came as a surprise even to the bluesman.
"Before this became a Christmas album there was still an intention of doing a straight, normal studio album, with no deadline," he said.
"We were working on something that had no real shape; we’d just collate material until we had enough to put out an album. And then it started to morph into the Christmas theme."
He was inspired to create the cover artwork himself by Bob Dylan’s sleeve painting for the Band’s Music From Big Pink .
"This is such great art," Clapton said. "We know now that Dylan is a fantastic artist, a great painter and sculptor. And I was inspired by that to do this, and I did it on a piece of hotel stationery."