Cream: The First Super Group at a Crossroads

Considered the first "Super Group," CREAM with ERIC CLAPTON (after leaving The Yardbirds) GINGER BAKER (Left the Graham Bond band, along with JACK BRUCE who had played Bass and Piano in that group), to create what they would call CREAM, since they were considered the "Cream of the Crop" musicians in the U.K. at the time. Cream made great hit records like, "Sunshine Of Your Love", "White Room" and "Crossroads."

 

But there was a problem, Baker and Bruce hated each other, and would fight and yell at each other during performances; sometimes Bruce would turn up his Bass so high Baker couldn't hear what they were playing. The good news was that they created Four Albums: "Fresh Cream", "Disraeli Gears", "Wheels of Fire" and "Goodbye." Wheels of Fire was the worlds first Platinum selling double album and they gained a fanatical following for their live Concerts.

 

Eric was caught in the middle between these two Mad-Men, and was able to keep Bruce and Baker half-way civilized for the good of the group. Just two years after Cream appeared, they split up; "Before somebody got killed." Clapton and Baker formed a new group, BLIND FAITH, and Bruce put his own band together.

 

Cream had an inordinate influence on future groups like: The Zepp, Jeff Beck and Deep Purple in the U.K.; and after touring in the U.S. southern rock groups including: The Allman Brothers, Lynyrd Skynyrd and later the Canadian stars Rush. They all followed Cream's path of intricate arrangements and technical expertise.

 

Fun Fact: Eric Clapton was shy about singing until Cream, and he slowly built the courage to sing more lead parts as the band matured; once he found his voice and got over the fear he became the lead singer in future bands. Cream was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993, and regrouped for the festivities, but right up until show time there was no guarantee that they would play together...so Robbie Robertson of the Band took them aside and explained the importance of the honor and that they could surely do three tunes from the old song-book without mayhem in front of a huge TV audience. He convinced them to play, they did a set with: "Sunshine of Your Love", "Crossroads", and "Born Under a Bad Sign." They brought the industry audience to their feet with loud applause.

 

Here's a video of them performing "Crossroads" at their last Concert together at Royal Albert Hall in London, in 1968. @therealdonrocks
 

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