December 10, 2008 – 4:31 am

Click on the panels for a better view or to download artwork.

Meets The BBC Big Band [no label, 1CD]

Live at the Birmingham Town Hall, UK, November 14, 2008. Very good FM recording.

At the height of Cream’s popularity in the the ’60s, it would have been very hard to imagine bassist Jack Bruce to be playing with a big band.

But 40 years on, here he is with the BBC Big Band, playing the Big Band arrangements of his classic songs.

Actually Bruce had performed with a big band two years ago. On October 26, 2006, he performed with the Hessischer Rundfunk Big Band, conducted by Jorg Achim Keller, at the 37th Deutsches Jazzfestival in Frankfurt with a similar setlist. Here he teams up with Keller again.

Bruce might have been a young man playing the blues with Cream but here, with his gravel voice, the 65-year-old bassist gives his world weary blues a piquant human face. And it sure brings a lump to your throat, before playing Sunshine Of Your Love, when Bruce says, “I’d like to dedicate this next song to my old, really good friend, Mitch Mitchell. We used to play this song… with another friend of mine…”

Thanks to leex100 for sharing this radio show on the Dime site.

Click on the highlighted tracks to download the MP3s (these are high quality stereo MP3s - sample rate of 192 kibit/s). As far as we can ascertain, this recording has never been officially released.

These tracks are no longer available for sharing.

Track 01. Never Tell Your Mother She’s Out Of Tune
Track 02. Spoonful
Track 03. Smiles and Grins
Track 04. Deserted Cities of the Heart
Track 05. Born Under a Bad Sign
Track 06. Theme from an Imaginary Western
Track 07. White Room
Track 08. Sunshine Of Your Love

Lineup includes:
Jack Bruce - vocals, bass
Gary Husband - drums
Justin Quinn - guitar
Jorg Achim Keller - conductor and arranger

2008 has been a busy year for Jack Bruce releases. First, there is Seven Moons, a new album featuring guitarist Robin Trower and drummer Gary Husband. Spirit is a three-CD set of Jack Bruce at the BBC over the years and Can You Follow? is a six-CD Jack Bruce retrospective. Click on the links to order the respective releases.


  2. This is some crazy stuff. I absolutely love this. Jack’s certainly not stagnating.:)

    By Society's Pliers on Dec 14, 2008

  3. Jack Bruce’s performance with the hr bigband from the 37th Deutsches Jazzfestival in Frankfurt was transmitted live on a digital sattelite transmitter over Europe, the whole 77 minutes of the greatest big band event since the late 1940ies … ;-)

    Interestingly, the german sound engineers did not
    close up the microphones to the solo instruments like the BBC engineers did here. Still can’t decide who made a better job, both
    are - in one word - phantastic.

    By Sri Sutcha on Dec 14, 2008

  4. great show. I can never have enough Jack

    By Matt on Dec 15, 2008

  5. Great Show!!!! I missed it the day it was on air!!!

    By Gonzague on Dec 17, 2008

  6. Thanks for this. Thrilling and very pleasurable. So nice to see (and hear) Jack getting some popular attention.

    By Grady Johnson on Dec 21, 2008

  7. Still among the best, and always worth a listen - especially to a free download of Bruce live. It’s a keeper.

    By O.B. Dan on Dec 29, 2008

  8. Fantastic performance from a legend. I am looking forward to seeing Jack in NYC on 4/4/09 at BB Kings club. I will try to record and post.

    By Johnny Kinkdom on Mar 16, 2009

  9. any chance for an re-upload?

    By Eddie Graf on Oct 17, 2017

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