Cream

AuthorMessage
White Riot
King For A Couple Of Days
White Riot
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 4761
June 22nd, 2007 at 11:04pm
Rather sad to think no one else likes Cream enough to make a topic on them! I'm here to fix that.

Image

This bio is from Wikipedia:

(The) Cream were a 1960s British rock band, which consisted of guitarist Eric Clapton, bassist Jack Bruce and drummer Ginger Baker. Celebrated as one of the first great power trios and supergroups of rock, their sound was characterised by a melange of blues, pop and psychedelia. They also laid down the foundations for heavy metal music, and inspired several generations of bands from Black Sabbath and Van Halen to The Smashing Pumpkins.[citation needed] Cream combined Clapton's blues guitar playing with the airy voice and intense basslines of Jack Bruce and the jazz-influenced drumming of Ginger Baker. Between 1966 and 1968 they sold over 15 million albums world wide.

Cream's music included songs based on traditional blues such as "Crossroads" and "Spoonful", and modern blues such as "Born Under a Bad Sign", as well as more eccentric songs such as "Strange Brew", "Tales of Brave Ulysses" and "Toad". Cream's biggest hits were "I Feel Free", "Sunshine of Your Love", "White Room", "Crossroads" and "Badge".

Cream, together with The Who, made a significant impact upon the popular music of the time providing a heavy yet technically proficient musical theme that foreshadowed the emergence of bands like Led Zeppelin in the late 1960s and Rush in the 1970s. The band's live performances influenced progressive rock acts and other jam bands, including the Grateful Dead, Phish, and even Black Sabbath.


Formation
Cream's beginnings can be traced back to 1966. By that time, Eric Clapton — whose career had begun in The Yardbirds and continued with John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers — had established a reputation as one of the premier blues guitarists in Britain. Clapton's virtuosity and raw power with the instrument inspired one fan to spray paint the words "Clapton is God" on the wall of an Islington underground station. Contrary to the popular myth, "Clapton is God" slogans did not appear all over London but only on that wall. Clapton, however, found the stoic environment of Mayall's band confining, and sought to expand his playing in a new band.

In 1966, Clapton met Baker, then the leader of the Graham Bond Organisation, which at one point featured Jack Bruce as bassist, but who also played harmonica and piano. Baker, too, felt stifled in the GBO, and grew tired of Graham Bond's drug addictions and bouts of mental instability. Baker had met Clapton after a gig (during Clapton's time with the Yardbirds). "I had always liked Ginger," explained Clapton. "Ginger had come to see me play with John Mayall. After the gig he drove me back to London in his Rover. I was very impressed with his car and driving. He was telling me that he wanted to start a band, and I had been thinking about it too."; each was impressed with the other's playing abilities, prompting Baker to ask Clapton to join his new, then-unnamed group. Clapton immediately said yes, but only on one condition: that Baker hire Jack Bruce as the group's bassist.

Clapton had met Bruce when the bassist/vocalist did a short stint with the Bluesbreakers in March 1966; the two had also worked together as part of a one-shot band called Powerhouse (which also included Steve Winwood and Paul Jones). Impressed with his vocals and technical prowess, Clapton had wanted to work with Bruce on an ongoing basis.

What Clapton did not know was that while Bruce was in Bond's band, he and Baker had been notorious for their quarreling. While both were excellent jazz musicians and respected each other's skills, the confines of the GBO had proved too small for their egos. Their volatile relationship included on-stage fights and the sabotaging of one another's instruments. After Baker fired Bruce from the band, Bruce continued to arrive for gigs; ultimately, Bruce was driven away from the band after Baker threatened him at knifepoint.

Nevertheless, Baker and Bruce were able to put aside their differences for the good of Baker's new trio, which he envisioned as collaborative, with each of the members contributing to music and lyrics. The band was named "Cream," as Clapton, Bruce, and Baker were already considered the "cream of the crop" amongst blues and jazz musicians in the exploding British music scene. Before deciding upon "Cream," the band considered calling themselves "Sweet 'n' Sour Rock 'n' Roll."

Shortly after the band's formation in 1966, Cream received an invitation to perform at the July 1966 "Winsdor Jazz & Blues Festival". The band hardly being a month old and with few original songs to their credit, Cream performed spirited blues reworkings that thrilled the large crowd and earned them a warm reception. They also got a chance to jam with Jimi Hendrix. Hendrix was a fan of Eric Clapton, and wanted a chance to play with him onstage. Hendrix was introduced to Cream through former Animal Chas Chandler.

It was during the early organization that it was decided Bruce would serve as the group's lead vocalist. While Clapton was shy about singing, he occasionally harmonized with Bruce, and as he grew as a singer, took lead vocals on some notable Cream tunes including "Crossroads," "Four Until Late," and "Badge."


Recording Years
Cream's debut album, Fresh Cream, was recorded and released in 1966. The album reached #6 in the UK charts and #39 in the United States. It mainly consisted of blues covers including "Four Until Late", "Rollin' And Tumblin'", "Spoonful", "I'm So Glad" and "Cat's Squirrel", an instrumental. The rest of the album featured songs written (or co-written) by Jack Bruce, most notably "Wrapping Paper" and "I Feel Free" (which was a UK hit single, but only released on the American edition of the LP) and a couple of songs written by Ginger Baker (one of which, "Toad", contained one of the earliest examples of a drum solo in rock music).

Cream's sophomore album, Disraeli Gears, was released in November 1967 and reached the Top 5 in the charts on both sides of the Atlantic. It was recorded at Atlantic Studios in New York. Disraeli Gears is often considered to be the band's defining effort, successfully blending psychedelic British rock with American blues. It was also the first Cream album to consist primarily of original songs, with only three of the eleven tracks written by others outside the band. Disraeli Gears not only features hits "Strange Brew" and "Tales of Brave Ulysess", but also "Sunshine of Your Love", arguably Cream's most popular song.

In 1968 came Cream's third release, Wheels of Fire, which topped the American charts. It also featured three live recordings from the Winterland Ballroom and one from the Fillmore. The opening song, "White Room" became a popular radio staple. Another song "Politician" was reportedly written by the band while waiting to perform live at the BBC.

Cream's final album, the appropriately titled Goodbye, was recorded in late 1968 and released in spring of 1969, after the band had already broken up . It featured six songs; three live recordings dating from a concert at The Forum in Los Angeles, California on the 19th of October, and three new studio recordings (the most notable,"Badge," was written by Clapton and George Harrison, who also played rhythm guitar). "I'm So Glad," which first appeared as a studio recording on Fresh Cream, appeared as a live track on Goodbye. It was the only song to appear on both Cream's first and last album.


Break up
Cream broke up in November 1968 due to clashing egos and divergent musical visions: Bruce and Baker's combustible relationship proved even worse as a result of the strain put upon the band by non-stop touring, forcing Clapton to play the perpetual role of peacekeeper. The fact that there was no "leader" of Cream could also be considered a contributing factor toward its demise: Clapton famously related how he once suddenly stopped playing in a concert without either of the others noticing.[2] This story would later be recounted by Ginger Baker in the liner notes for the 1997 box set Those Were the Days, wherein he insists that he stopped playing along with Clapton, and it was only Bruce that carried on. Baker also recounted the story in the 2006 DVD Classic Artists.[2]

After the completion of Wheels of Fire in mid-1968, the band members had had enough and wanted to go their separate ways. As Baker would state in a 2006 interview with Music Mart magazine, "It just got to the point where Eric said to me: 'I've had enough of this,' and I said so have I. I couldn't stand it. The last year with Cream was just agony. It's damaged my hearing permanently, and today I've still got a hearing problem because of the sheer volume throughout the last year of Cream. But it didn't start off like that. In 1966, it was great. It was really a wonderful experience musically, and it just went into the realms of stupid."

Clapton had also fallen under the spell of Bob Dylan's former backing group, now known as The Band and their debut album, Music from Big Pink, which proved to be a welcome breath of fresh air in comparison to the incense and psychedelia that had informed Cream. Furthermore, he had read a scathing Cream review in Rolling Stone magazine, a publication he had much admired, where the reviewer, Jon Landau called him a master of "the blues cliché." It was in the wake of that article that Clapton wanted to end Cream and pursue a different musical direction.

Their management persuaded them to do one final tour to promote their new album. This "farewell tour" consisted of 22 shows at 19 venues in the United States between October 4 and November 4, 1968, and two final farewell concerts at the Royal Albert Hall on November 26, 1968. Initially another double album was planned comprising live material from this tour plus new studio tracks, but a single album, Goodbye was released instead with three live tracks taken from their performance at The Forum in Los Angeles on October 19, 1968, and three studio tracks, one written by each of the band members. The final United States gig was at the Rhode Island Auditorium, November 4th, 1968.

The two Royal Albert Hall concerts were filmed for a BBC documentary and released on video (and later DVD) as Farewell Concert. Both shows were sold out and attracted more attention than any other Cream concert, but their performance was regarded by many as below standard. Baker himself said of the concerts: "It wasn’t a good gig ... Cream was better than that ... We knew it was all over. We knew we were just finishing it off, getting it over with." Cream's supporting acts were Taste and the newly formed Yes, who received good reviews.


Live Cream
Although Cream's studio work has stood the test of time, their true influence lies in their live set. Cream took the idea of jamming to a whole new level incorporating their jazz background into their long 20 minute jams influencing bands like Led Zeppelin, the Jeff Beck Group and the Allman Brothers Band.

The early Cream bootlegs capture a much tighter band showcasing more songs. All of the songs are reasonably short 5 minute versions of "N.S.U.", "Spoonful" and "Toad". However, as the band went into the late 1967, they incorporated more jamming time in each song, sometimes stretching out to 20 minutes. According to Jack Bruce, they were obligated to play 20 minute jams or the audience would angrily ask for their money back. Nonetheless, songs like "Sunshine of Your Love", "Crossroads" and "Tales of Brave Ulysses" remained reasonably short, the latter being the band's signature opener until "White Room" took its place in mid-1968. The band would also do a 45 minute opus of songs capturing a medley of "Stepping Out" (showcasing Eric Clapton), "Traintime" (showcasing Jack Bruce's harmonica) and "Toad" (Ginger Baker's tour-de-force drum solo), and they would usually go straight into "I'm So Glad" for an encore. This remained their signature closer.

Wheels of Fire showcased the importance of a live recording. The 16 minute "Spoonful", from their March Winterland show, became their most epic song and a concert favourite. Bootlegs from shows following the release of the record reveals the audience's requests for "Spoonful" which was welcomed with thunderous applause.

But if the band's Winterland show was the peak of their live set, the band went downhill from there. In an interview from Cream: Classic Artists, Ginger Baker himself agreed that the band was getting worse by the minute. The performances heard on Goodbye are much looser and their farewell concert showcases a burnt-out band whose fire has long-since extinquished.[3]

However, the record company could not help but cash in on the band's live set. Live Cream was released featuring more tracks from the Wheels of Fire Winterland show including a 10 minute "N.S.U." and a 15 minute "Sweet Wine." The performances are quite erratic and showed the public that there was more to Cream's live set than met the eye. Bootlegs began to appear on vinyl left and right across British and American record stores. Still trying to cash in on Cream, the record company released Live Cream Volume II in 1972. Comparitively short versions of the band's later hits, "Deserted Cities of the Heart", "White Room", "Politician", "Tales of Brave Ulysses" and "Sunshine of Your Love", showcased a different kind of live Cream. Only "Steppin' Out" showcased a 13 minute jam featuring a Clapton and Baker duo. Although the song ends abruptly, it was actually followed by "Traintime." This album was not widely acclaimed as its predecesor.

Cream's live sets were always different every gig. As commented by Ginger Baker[4], the band fed off of each other during their improvisations; for instance, Baker would play a note or two that sparked Clapton to play something; whatever Clapton played would spark Bruce to play something, etc. The band never played a song live the same way twice.


ImageImage Image
wfougoafoihqfe
Falling In Love With The Board
wfougoafoihqfe
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 9656
June 23rd, 2007 at 03:32am
Cream = greatness

Eric Clapton is immense :]
Peardrops
Addict
Peardrops
Age: 30
Gender: Female
Posts: 11782

Blog
June 23rd, 2007 at 08:58am
Hey, why hasn't there been a Cream thread before?
Damn!

Cream are amazing
Dom
Jackass
Dom
Age: 30
Gender: Male
Posts: 1691
June 23rd, 2007 at 10:09am
hehe woo good thread.

First couple of times i heard disraeli gears, i was like "this is just weird trippy shit" but that album is soooo good! sunshine of your love was one of the first riffs i learnt.

and i agree, this new emo crap is just polluting peoples ears, people need to listen to the immense ammount of amazing albums released in the late 60's.
White Riot
King For A Couple Of Days
White Riot
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 4761
June 23rd, 2007 at 11:02am
Dude, yes. Disraeli Gears is heavy. That album blows me away, it's genius.
EDIT: A few minutes after I typed this, my CD player cut on and started playing Strange Brew. o_o
Haha, that was really scary.
Jax.
Was Here Two Weeks Ago
Jax.
Age: 29
Gender: Female
Posts: 42834
June 23rd, 2007 at 02:05pm
Cassie Hell yes @ Cream.
Jay Tee
Had A Life Before GSB
Jay Tee
Age: 31
Gender: Male
Posts: 26777

Mibba Blog
June 23rd, 2007 at 03:13pm
Cream were immense; they churned out some truly great music. But I feel that Clapton did some of his best work was achieved away from Cream, though. Plus the Jimi Hendrix Experience owned them completely.

And the fact that you're placing ~emo~ music under one huge banner declaring it "crap" pisses me off. I'm not a big fan of emo (whatever you mean by that) but you by no means have to use this thread as a jab at it. It's condescending and just plain rude. Yeah, Cream were a great band, but it doesn't mean they're better than the bands of today just because you say so Rolling Eyes that's pretty much making this a hate thread of sorts, and theoretically should be locked.
rollerpig
GSBitch
rollerpig
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 62283
June 23rd, 2007 at 03:27pm
Cream are awesome.


uhm. I like how you insulted another genre in the subtitle. wtf. Rolling Eyes



...edit: yeah what james said. Shifty
White Riot
King For A Couple Of Days
White Riot
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 4761
June 23rd, 2007 at 06:04pm
Oh, please. Calm down. It was just a little joke, not to be taken seriously.
gazorples
Addict
gazorples
Age: 26
Gender: Female
Posts: 10175
June 23rd, 2007 at 09:23pm
Ah Great band. One of my favorites from the 60's.
trapped in a box
Jackass
trapped in a box
Age: 27
Gender: Female
Posts: 1175
June 24th, 2007 at 12:48pm
I love Sunshine of Your Love Retard
tomamazon
GSBitch
tomamazon
Age: 25
Gender: Female
Posts: 68084

Mibba Blog
June 24th, 2007 at 02:24pm
Cassie Cassie Cassie Cassie Cassie Cassie Cassie Cassie Cassie
asthenia.
Falling In Love With The Board
asthenia.
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 8632

Blog
June 24th, 2007 at 05:58pm
Cassie
They're awesome.

My mum's a huge fan.
White Riot
King For A Couple Of Days
White Riot
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 4761
June 24th, 2007 at 10:35pm
katie's not grey:
Cassie
They're awesome.

My mum's a huge fan.

That's always a good thing. My mom hates them....*sigh*
Franny.
Falling In Love With The Board
Franny.
Age: -
Gender: Female
Posts: 5246
June 25th, 2007 at 01:39am
great band. but to be honest, i like them because of eric clapton.
Jay Tee
Had A Life Before GSB
Jay Tee
Age: 31
Gender: Male
Posts: 26777

Mibba Blog
June 25th, 2007 at 05:12am
Daydream Believer:
Oh, please. Calm down. It was just a little joke, not to be taken seriously.

Edit the thread title then if it's not that big a deal Rolling Eyes

I've taken offence to it, and everytime I come on here I am therefore offended.
White Riot
King For A Couple Of Days
White Riot
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 4761
June 25th, 2007 at 04:45pm
Geeze. Is it really bothering you THAT much? If so, I'll take it down. I'm honestly not trying to offend anyone. I tend to have a nature where I'll say or write things that make me seem like an asshole, but I don't intend to.
Jay Tee
Had A Life Before GSB
Jay Tee
Age: 31
Gender: Male
Posts: 26777

Mibba Blog
June 25th, 2007 at 05:59pm
Daydream Believer:
Geeze. Is it really bothering you THAT much? If so, I'll take it down. I'm honestly not trying to offend anyone. I tend to have a nature where I'll say or write things that make me seem like an asshole, but I don't intend to.

Yes it is bothering me.

If I said something along those lines, or similar, I'd be flagged up and raged against.
White Riot
King For A Couple Of Days
White Riot
Age: 28
Gender: Female
Posts: 4761
June 25th, 2007 at 08:07pm
Jay Tee:
Daydream Believer:
Geeze. Is it really bothering you THAT much? If so, I'll take it down. I'm honestly not trying to offend anyone. I tend to have a nature where I'll say or write things that make me seem like an asshole, but I don't intend to.

Yes it is bothering me.

If I said something along those lines, or similar, I'd be flagged up and raged against.

Well what exactly are you doing to me?
Either way, I made this thread so everyone could talk about Cream, not so I could argue with you on what you think is moral.
Settled. It's gone.
Pito
King For A Couple Of Days
Pito
Age: 99
Gender: Male
Posts: 2430
June 27th, 2007 at 11:47pm
I always thought Cream was one of the greatest bands of all time...
Register