In 1971, Cale’s commercial recording of the song was released by Leon Russell’s Shelter Records as a single and a cut on his “Act Naturally” LP. The single just missed the Top 40 by charting at #42.
Eric Clapton’s First Version
Most individuals became familiar with “After Midnight” was released as a single by ATCO in 1970 to support Clapton’s solo LP. The song peaked on the American charts at #18 and did much better in Canada at #10.
Clapton’s 1987 Version
On the boxed set Crossroads, Clapton released a second version of “After Midnight” that was arranged quite differently than his original hit single from 1970. In addition, this version had a slightly slower tempo than his original 1970 recording. Although not released as a single, the 1987 version gained popularity as the music bed for a Michelob commercial.
Eric Clapton and J.J. Cale Together
Here’s a rare treat featuring both Clapton and Cale on “After Midnight.” While I am not sure of the date of this video, it probably was captured to tape in the early 2000s.