Cream drummer Ginger Baker dies at 80

Cream drummer Ginger Baker dies at 80

Cream drummer Ginger Baker dies at 80

Ginger Baker, notorious hellraiser and celebrated drummer in the supergroup Cream, has died at the age of 80 at a hospital in the United Kingdom.

'Thanks to all americans in your kind words over the past few weeks, they added.

The family had announces the London-born signer was critically ill in hospital but "holding his own" back in September.

His daughter Nettie Baker said her father died peacefully and without pain.

Then, in the 1970s, Baker led bands that linked the flamboyant intensity of rock to the intricate polyrhythms of jazz and jazz-rock fusion. "RIP Ginger, one of the greatest drummers of all time". Baker also co-founded the Baker Gurvitz Army, a band that lasted three years. He'd start by establishing an easygoing groove that coaxed soloists like Clapton and Steve Winwood (his colleague in Blind Faith and the first edition of Ginger Baker's Air Force) into the spotlight.

Baker then joined the Graham Bond Organization, a blues band that quickly became popular in the United Kingdom with Bond and bassist Jack Bruce with whom Baker had a legendary tumultuous relationship.

Baker established himself firmly in that group, most specifically during their live sets when he assumed centre stage with his percussive instrumental tour-de-force dubbed Toad.

"There aren't many drummers who can get anywhere near me", he boasted in an old interview still posted on his personal website. But by 1968 Baker and Bruce had worn each other out and even Clapton had exhausted of their deafening, marathon jams, including the Baker showcase "Toad", one of rock's first extended drum solos. He had been playing jazz since he was a teenager and spent years in Africa in the 1970s, forming a close friendship with the Nigerian musician-activist Fela Kuti.

During his musical beginnings on the London jazz scene of the late 1950s, Peter "Ginger" Baker forged a name for himself for his unconventional drum setup and flamboyant style.

Ex-Beatle Paul McCartney recorded his classic 1973 album "Band On The Run" there with his band Wings.

A 2013 documentary, "Beware of Mr Baker", which critics say showed the best of the worst of Baker - capturing one of his violent outbursts - featured an array of music legends lauding his legacy.

As powerful of his drumming, the red-haired and edgy Baker also forged a fearsome reputation off-stage, involved in numerous scraps with musicians and media.

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