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Jack Bruce


1943 -

Rock musician and composer. Born in Bishopbriggs (East Dunbartonshire), Bruce regularly travelled with his musical parents around Canada and the USA, but completed his education at Bellahouston Academy and Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama. He left the latter to play jazz, disillusioned with the training offered.

He joined John Mayall & the Bluesbreakers in 1965, of which Eric Clapton was already a member. Bruce left the following year to join the band Manfred Mann, again playing bass guitar, where he enjoyed success with Pretty Flamingo which reached No.1. At the same time he was again collaborating with Clapton and Manfred Man's singer Paul Jones in the studio group Powerhouse. However, it was as a member of Cream, with Clapton and Ginger Baker, that Bruce is most famous, not only as bass player, but also as lead vocalist and songwriter. Between 1966 and 1968, they produced the highly successful albums Fresh Cream, Disraeli Gears, Wheels of Fire, the world's first to achieve platinum sales, and Goodbye, along with numerous hit singles. Bruce wrote and sang many of these, including I Feel Free (1966), White Room (1968) and perhaps the world's most performed guitar riff, in Sunshine of your Love (1968). Cream briefly reunited in 1993 and again in 2005.

From the 1970s, Bruce pursued a solo career producing successful albums such as Songs for a Tailor (1969), Out of the Storm (1974), A Question of Time (1989), Something Else (1993).

Bruce developed a drug dependency which had cost him a fortune by the end of the 70s, as well as damaging his health. He suffered from liver cancer and received a transplant in 2003. Bruce accepted a special Recording Lifetime Achievement Grammy Award on behalf of Cream in 2006. In 2007 a new rehearsal hall at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and Drama was named in his honour, while he received an honorary degree from Glasgow Caledonian University in 2009.


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