It has been reported that Eric Clapton donated £1,000 and lent his personal van to the UK anti-lockdown music group Jam For Freedom earlier in the year, congratulating the group’s founder on what he has described as “great work”. The news comes after a recent investigative story was published, reporting on the guitarist’s support of Jam For Freedom, a group whose main purpose is described as: “spearheading the pro-freedom revolution happening globally as a response to restrictions on our basic human rights to work, travel and live.”
Jam For Freedom intend to go about this “pro-freedom revolution” by putting on shows and “free jams” in public spaces. One of the group’s most famous numbers – known as ‘We Are The 99%’ – includes the lyric: “stick your poisonous vaccine up your arse.” According to the group’s founder, Cambel McLaughlin, Clapton donated £1,000 to the group’s GoFundMe page earlier in the year. McLaughlin believed it was fake, but had the payment verified when he emailed the account listed and received a text response from Clapton himself.
Recalling the text message, McLaughlin said “It was something complimentary, along the lines of, ‘Hey, it’s Eric – great work you’re doing’.” Jam For Freedom revealed Clapton’s donation on their social media channels back in April, writing: “Delighted to announce one of the greatest modern musicians alive has helped us stay afloat after damage to our equipment from police recklessness on Saturday,” referring to the moment police clashed with anti-lockdown protesters in Hyde Park on April 24th.
McLaughlin has also said that he and Clapton spoke on the phone together, at which point, the musician offered Jam For Freedom the temporary use of his personal six-person VW Transporter van. The group accepted the offer. In addition, Clapton offered the group money to buy their own van. However, McLaughlin didn’t reveal how much.
Clapton even offered to sit in with the group during one of their performances. According to McLaughlin, Clapton remarked that he hadn’t been able to play the guitar for months on end due to the after-effects of the Covid-19 vaccine. “We did want to have a jam, but because of his condition at the time, it was tough for him to play,” McLaughlin said, “and to play outside when his fingers are cold because of the side effects.”