Archive for the ‘Cream’ Category

Ginger Baker’s Jazz Confusion Stockton Arc July 2nd 2012

Ginger Baker’s Jazz Confusion Stockton Arc July 2nd 2012
I couldn’t resist taking up the opportunity to see the legendary drummer Ginger Baker at Stockton Arc last night. It was the first time that I have been to the Arc, which is an arts centre venue in the centre of Stockton. Ginger’s current band consists of Pee Wee Ellis on saxophone, Pee Wee was in James Brown’s band in the 60s and is also long-time musical director for Van Morrison (aha I thought I recognised this guy), Alec Dankworth, on electric and double bass, Alec is son of Cleo Laine and John Dankworth, and twice named Bassist of the Year in the British Jazz Awards, and Abass Dodoo on percussion. Ginger took the stage spot on the advertised start time of 8pm. The band played two sets of jazz instrumentals. I’m not a big jazz fan, but enjoyed this gig. These guys can really play, and it shows. Great to see Ginger again.

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Cream The Royal Albert Hall London 6 May 2005

Cream The Royal Albert Hall London 2005
This was a big gig for me. I’d watched the Cream farewell concert on TV in the late 60s and was just mesmerised by Clapton. His hair, the psychedelic painted SG, the “woman” tone he described in the film, it all seemed just sensational to me, as a kid at the time. I so wished that I’d had the chance to see Cream. I remember older boys at school talking about seeing them at a gig in Newcastle and saying how great they were. I was so jealous of them. I bought Goodbye Cream and played it again and again. I saw Clapton many times in the 70s and 80s, and Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker with their solo projects. But to see Cream was a great dream, an ambition. So when the rumours of a reunion came to fruition and it was announced that the three legends would come together for a series of shows in London I was determined to go. I was nervous about getting tickets, and stressed about it for days before they went on sale. On the morning that they did go on sale I had two phones and a computer to hand, and got straight through to the Albert Hall box office on one of the phones, managing to my joy to buy tickets some ten rows from the stage. I then waited in anticipation for the gig. Would it be as good as I hoped? Marie came with me, and we both thoroughly enjoyed the experience. Judging by the American accents in evidence, the Albert Hall was full of fans who had travelled a long way for the honour of seeing this legendary band play for one more time. The atmosphere was strange, everyone was quiet in anticipation. It was as if the crowd couldn’t believe what they were seeing. Quiet, almost religious. The set covered everything I could have wished for with a selection from all of the albums. Clapton was god again, Jack sang beautifully and Ginger pounded away on his drums. The crowd stayed in their seats until almost the end. For Sunshine of Your Love, which was the encore, we were all up and we managed to get right to the front. Marie was leaning on the stage directly in front of Jack Bruce and I was just behind her. You can even see us on the DVD if you look closely. A night that I will remember for ever. Sometimes your dreams do come true, and sometimes they are as good as you dreamed they would be. Happy days. Setlist: I’m So Glad; Spoonful; Outside Woman Blues; Pressed Rat and Wart Hog; Sleepy Time Time; N.S.U.; Badge; Politician; Sweet Wine; Rollin’ And Tumblin’; Stormy Monday; Deserted Cities of the Heart; Born Under a Bad Sign; We’re Going Wrong; Crossroads; Sitting on Top of the World; White Room; Toad. Encore:Sunshine of Your Love.