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Cream Drummer Ginger Bakes Dies Aged 80

Monday, 07 October 2019 Written by Laura Johnson

Cream drummer Ginger Baker (pictured left) has died aged 80.

Following an announcement in late September that he was critically ill in hospital, it was confirmed on October 6 that he had passed away.

"We are very sad to say that Ginger has passed away peacefully in hospital this morning. Thank you to everyone for your kind words over the past weeks," tweeted his family late yesterday morning.

Born Peter Edward Baker on August 19, 1939 in Lewisham, London, he co-founded the band Cream with Jack Bruce and Eric Clapton in 1966, and subsequently earned the title "rock's first superstar drummer" for his early work combining jazz and world music with rock.

Following Cream's split in 1968, Baker joined forces with Clapton again to form Blind Faith, completed by bassist Ric Grech from Family and Steve Winwood of Traffic on keyboards and vocals. They dropped one album before parting ways and Baker went on to form Ginger Baker's Air Force.

Over the years the legendary drummer remained active in the music industry, setting up a recording studio in Nigeria in the '70s, working with Hawkwind and Public Image Ltd in the '80s, while the '90s saw him play with Masters of Reality, as well as form The Ginger Baker Trio, and BBM. 

In 2005 Baker reunited with Clapton and Bruce for a handful of Cream concerts. However, in 2016 he announed he would not be touring anymore due to being diagnosed with serious heart issues.

Since the news of his passing, there has been an outpour of tributes from the music community, including posts from Paul McCartney, Mick Jagger, and the family of his bandmate Bruce.

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