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Cream icon Bruce dead at 71

Bassist and vocalist Jack’s passing confirmed after hoax rumours - as Ginger Baker says "Goodbye my friend"

Cream icon Jack Bruce has died at the age of 71, his family have announced.

The bassist and vocalist had been the victim of a series of hoax announcements about his passing in recent days, but it’s now been confirmed. It’s believed he succumbed to liver disease.

A brief statement on his official website, Facebook page and Twitter account says: “It is with great sadness that we, Jack’s family, announce the passing of our beloved Jack: husband, father, granddad, and all round legend. The world of music will be a poorer place without him, but he lives on in his music and forever in our hearts.”

The statement has been supported by publicist Claire Singers, who says: “He died today at his home in Suffolk, surrounded by his family.”

Bruce formed Cream with Eric Clapton and Ginger Baker in 1966 and recorded four genre-defining albums before splitting two years later. They were the first-ever band to achieve platinum sales for Wheels Of Fire.

The relationship between Bruce and drummer Baker was notoriously stormy, with several violent episodes on record. The trio reunited in 1993 and 2005, but further gathering were ruled out on a number of occasions by all three members.

Baker said this evening: "A very sad day. Goodbye my friend."

Bruce released his first album in a decade, Silver Rails earlier this year, featuring Phil Manzanera, Uli Jon Roth, Robin Trower, Bernie Marsden and others.

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