Jack Bruce, whose voice, bass playing, and songwriting contributions were among the defining elements of Cream, as well as John Mayall’s Bluesbreakers, passed away on Saturday, October 25, 2014, as a result of liver disease. He was 71. Anyone who ever witnessed or listened to Jack’s singing and bass playing would attest to a virtuosity that was supreme and driven. His songwriting contributions included such classic hits as “White Room,” “I Feel Free”, Sunshine of Your Love, and “Politician”.
Trained as a classical cellist, Mr. Bruce applied his considerable talents to the iconic bass lines that propelled so many of the songs performed by Cream, playing in harmonic and rhythmic unison with Eric Clapton’s guitar playing and Ginger Baker’s drumming. He was admired by scores of well-known and unknown guitarists, bass players, singers and songwriters alike. Upon his passing, many well-known musical artists posted their tributes and fond wishes about Mr. Bruce.
Eric Clapton posted on his Facebook page that Bruce “was a great musician and composer, and a tremendous inspiration to me” and on his Facebook page, Ginger Baker added “I am very sad to learn of the loss of a fine man, Jack Bruce… My thoughts & wishes are with his family at this difficult time.”
Tony Iommi of Black Sabbath said in a Tweet that Bruce had been his greatest influence as well as his favorite bass player, as well as adding that: “He was a hero to so many.”
Long-time friend and fellow musician, Robin Trower of Procol Harum, said on his Facebook page, “It has always been a great source of pride to me to have made music with Jack (one of the few musicians that can be truly called a force of nature) and Jack and I were proud of that music.”
Guitarist John McLaughlin said on Twitter, ”Very sad to have lost my old friend Jack Bruce.”
And, Leslie West of Mountain, on his Facebook page stated, “It is with great sadness that one of the worlds greatest musicians and bass players, who I had the honor of playing with in West Bruce and Laing, Jack Bruce has died. I was hoping somehow that we might have gotten together one last time. Rest in Peace my friend.”
For a full obituary please visit Rolling Stone.