Cream wows audience at final concert

Justin Rodstrom

Cream united on Oct. 26 for its seventh and final concert. There was a feeling of anticipation in the air, but also a feeling of wonder as to what will happen next. Cream took the stage to a roar of applause and screaming 50-year-olds at 8:35 and began with the hit “I’m So Glad,” a song that summarized the feeling of the audience that night. The concert ran two hours in length and covered material from all four albums released between 1966 and 1968.

Some of the highlights of the concert were “White Room,” “Sunshine of Your Love,” “We’re Going Wrong” and a cover of a T. Bone Walker song, “Stormy Monday.”

The last time Cream toured together was in 1968, when they broke up after disputes between the members. These disputes made this tour very unlikely, and orchestrating it was a massive undertaking for Eric Clapton. He spent an entire year convincing Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker that they could indeed get along for seven shows and make around $100 million in the process. The three musicians worked together on a two-disc DVD and CD set released from their four nights in London’s Royal Albert Hall. After four Royal Albert Hall shows, Cream made a trip across the Atlantic to Madison Square Garden to do three shows in front of 40,000 fans.

I was at the final show. It was a concert for the ages. The final night saw a whopping 16-minute drum solo by Ginger, the longest and most impressive improvisation of the entire tour, as well as very spirited versions of “Tales of Brave Ulysses” and “White Room” (complete with wah-wah), and an unbelievable version of “We’re Going Wrong” that kept the audience enthralled. The encore was a bittersweet version of “Sunshine of Your Love.” Afterwards, Cream gracefully bowed before a sold-out Madison Square Garden.