Jack - The Biography of Jack Bruce
By Steven Myatt
On November 26 1968, at The Royal Albert Hall, the rock band Cream played their farewell concert. Although only together for a little over two years, they had established themselves as one of Britain’s most exciting, innovative and important bands. Cream created a jazz/blues/rock fusion which re-defined contemporary music. All three were hugely talented musicians in their own right, and their music had authority and, above all else, unparalleled power and drive.
Then, in May 2005, they returned. To the huge surprise and delight of their millions of fans, they played four gigs in one week – back at The Royal Albert Hall. For many it was almost beyond belief that a reunion would ever happen. The tickets sold out in record time, and fans came from all over the world.
After the 1968 farewell concert, Cream’s bass player, vocalist and co-songwriter, Jack Bruce, quickly created a new and hugely successful solo career – starting with his greatly admired ‘Songs For A Tailor’ album. Since then he has played with some of the most respected musicians in the world, has released many albums and performed live in front of several million people. Through the late Seventies and Eighties though his life was blighted by drink and drugs problems. During this period his first marriage collapsed and he also had to endure the death of his eldest son. In the autumn of 2003 he survived potentially fatal complications following a liver transplant.
Born in Glasgow in 1943 into a poor and politically very active family, Jack was recognised as a gifted musician from an early age. He studied composition at the Royal Scottish Academy of Music and developed a broad musical taste. When he was still only sixteen, in any one week he would be playing with a jazz band, a country and western group and a full-scale orchestra – and be composing classical music. He bought his first car months before he was old enough to drive it; already earning more than his father. His passions, he says, were music, girls and cars. In the early Sixties he moved from the acoustic bass to the electric bass and was caught up in the emerging London r ‘n b scene. He rapidly gained a formidable reputation as a very powerful and creative player, with a highly distinctive style.
The first biography of a uniquely talented man – let alone the first authorised biography.
Originally published in 2005, this 224 page hardback edition provides a detailed and enjoyable account of Jack Bruce's life as well as comprehensive information on the instruments and amplification he used throughout his career, and features a large number of never-before-seen photographs and unique, personal contributions from both the great man himself and the huge number of people who knew him and worked with him.