Ginger Baker is probably best known as the drummer with
British rock band Cream and also Blind Faith. Despite being
hailed as The Greatest Rock Drummer he actually dislikes
the title preferring the title "jazz drummer".
Following his tenure with a number of jazz bands in the late
fifties and early sixties his career really took off
commercially when he joined the Graham Bond
Organisation. From here he formed Cream along with
fellow Bond Organisation bassist Jack Bruce and Eric Clapton
guitarist with John Mayall's Bluesbreakers. Cream were an
instant hit particularly in America were they sealed their
reputation with extensive touring and the release of the
albums Fresh Cream, Disraeli Gears and Wheels of Fire.
Following the split with Cream Ginger formed Blind Faith
along with Eric Clapton Steve Winwood and Ric Grech.
Once again the band enjoyed huge commercial success
and played one massively attended open air gig in London's
Hyde Park in June 1969. Following this gig the band released
their only studio album the self titled Blind Faith before
embarking on a successful American tour.
Ginger's next musical stop was his own band Ginger Baker's
Airforce who released two albums of part studio part live
Following the breakup of airforce in early 1971 Ginger
moved to Africa and built his own recording studio in Nigeria.
At this point musically however Ginger was incredibly prolific
working with Fela Ransome Kuti and also his own band Salt.
He also recorded his own solo album Stratavarious. In 1974
Ginger returned to rock music with the Baker Gurvitz Army
who over the next two years produced three studio albums
and toured extensively.
In November 1978 after a short period setting up his own
Polo Club (something that still interests Ginger to this day)
Ginger found himself in Berlin for a concert with his old
friend Fela Anikulapo Kuti and Africa 70 at the Berlin Jazzfest.
The three tracks contained on this album are a magnificent
blend of styles and one which went down exceedingly well
with the audience although best described as a jam the music
is never boring or self indulgent. This high quality recording
is a fine testament to the pairing of Fela and Africa 70 and
Ginger Baker and captures a real moment in time where the
language is music and the currency is virtuosity.
The recordings featured in the Official Ginger Baker Bootleg Series are sure to become collector's items and are all sanctioned by Ginger Baker.