Before forming Cream, the band’s members were already stars, known for their roles in John Mayall & The Bluesbreakers, Manfred Mann, and The Graham Bond Organisation.
∙ One of rock’s first power trios, Cream influenced such groups as The Jimi Hendrix Experience, Grand Funk Railroad, Rush, and ZZ Top.
∙ Bassist Jack Bruce worked with English poet Pete Brown on the lyrics to their hits “White Room,” “I Feel Free,” and “Sunshine of Your Love.”
∙ Bruce was inspired to write the distinctive riff of “Sunshine of Your Love” after witnessing Jimi Hendrix’s extraordinary guitarwork at a Saville Theatre concert in London.
∙ Ginger Baker’s performance on the instrumental “Toad” played a big part in introducing drum solos—long popular in jazz—to rock ’n’ roll audiences.
∙ Their 1968 LP, Wheels of Fire, topped the US charts and became the first-ever double album to be certified Platinum.
∙ Eric Clapton is the only musician to have been inducted into the Rock & Roll Hall of Fame three times—as a solo artist and as a member of both Cream and The Yardbirds.