I was sad to hear about Jack Bruce passing away at the age of only 71.
He was a master of the bass guitar – not really surprising since he was classically trained on cello before switching genres to jazz/rock/pop – and his bass rhythms are quite distinctive on anything he recorded.
I remember well reading of his short time with pop group Manfred Mann where their repertoire was so unchallenging that he didn’t even need to rehearse, just turned up and played faultlessly on the night.
He featured in very many bands of different genres, but the one for which he will be remembered is of course Cream with the great Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker, both of whom are still going strong and performing at the time of writing. Cream only lasted a couple of years, and to my mind a lot of their stuff is simply self-indulgent and too self-absorbed to bear repeated listening. And with his solo work going on until very recently, I do wonder if he found it frustrating that all most people remember him for is those two years in the late sixties.
Here’s a Youtube video of Jack being interviewed about “Silver Rails”, his first studio album after ten years released in March 2014
Or even better is this hilarious video of Ginger Baker being interviewed by a chap from the Guardian.
Ginger Baker is notorious for being “difficult” in interviews, and this one is no exception.