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Cream bassist Jack Bruce dies

By Emanuella Grinberg, CNN
updated 8:07 PM EDT, Sat October 25, 2014
Click through to see<a href='http://www.cnn.com/SPECIALS/world/obituaries-2014'> people who died</a> in 2014. Click through to see people who died in 2014.
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STORY HIGHLIGHTS
  • NEW: Eric Clapton says Jack Bruce a "tremendous inspiration"
  • Bruce was part of legendary 1960s rock band Cream
  • Band was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993

(CNN) -- Jack Bruce, singer, songwriter and bassist for legendary 1960s rock band Cream, died Saturday at 71.

Bruce's family confirmed the death of the Scottish musician on his official website and Facebook page.

"The world of music will be a poorer place without him, but he lives on in his music and forever in our hearts."

Considered one of the greatest rock trios of all time, Cream was formed by Bruce, guitarist Eric Clapton and drummer Ginger Baker in 1966. The band produced such hits as "Sunshine of Your Love," "White Room," "Crossroads" and "Strange Brew," many of which Bruce wrote and sang. He also helped come up with the memorable guitar riff in "Sunshine of Your Love."

The band members' infighting and drug use became almost as well-known as their musical talent, and the group parted ways in 1968.

"Jack felt that he had strayed too far from his ideals and wanted to rediscover his musical and social roots," according to his official biography.

Born to musical parents in Glasgow, Scotland, in 1943, Bruce played in various dance bands and jazz groups before joining the Graham Bond Organization in 1962, where he met Baker. He later joined John Mayall's Blues Breakers and met guitarist Eric Clapton, leading to the formation of Cream.

After group broke up, Bruce went on to record solo albums and front bands. He released more than a dozen solo LPs over the next four decades, including his latest, "Silver Rails," in March. Cream reunited briefly in 1993 for the band's induction into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame.

Baker expressed condolences on his Facebook page for "the loss of a fine man."

"My thoughts & wishes are with his family at this difficult time."

Clapton, on his Facebook page, said Bruce "was a great musician and composer, and a tremendous inspiration to me."

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