Clapton Readying New Solo Album, Reptile

Upcoming release to include covers of songs by James Taylor, Stevie Wonder, Ray Charles.

Less than a year after collaborating with B.B. King on the hit album Riding With the King, Eric Clapton plans to release a new solo album, titled Reptile, on March 13.

For Reptile the guitarist once again worked with Simon Climie, formerly of British pop band Climie Fisher and who previously collaborated on Clapton's Pilgrim (1998) solo LP and his 1997 dance music project TDF.

Others also appearing on the album include jazz keyboardist Joe Sample, Rock and Roll Hall of Fame inductees the Impressions (minus their leader, the late Curtis Mayfield), former Beatles sideman Billy Preston, Texan singer/guitarist Doyle Bramhall II and ex-Squeeze member Paul Carrack.

In addition to Clapton's original numbers, Reptile also features a number of covers, including new versions of James Taylor's "Don't Let Me Be Lonely Tonight," Stevie Wonder's "I Ain't Gonna Stand for It," Ray Charles' "Come Back Baby" and J.J. Cale's "Travelin' Light."

Cale, of course, is the artist who originally wrote and recorded "After Midnight" and "Cocaine," songs that Clapton re-recorded for his 1970 self-titled debut album and 1977's Slowhand, respectively.

The singer/guitarist dedicated Reptile to his late uncle Adrian, who passed away last spring. In the liner notes, Clapton writes that he was especially close to Adrian because as a child he was led to believe that his grandmother was actually his mother and that his uncle was really his brother.

Clapton will kick off a world tour at London's Royal Albert Hall on February 3, but has yet to announce any U.S. dates.