Jack Bruce, Seven Moons Will Have to Wait

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There had been a jazz-blues-rock fusion back in the 60s and 70s with people like John Mayall and John McLaughlin creating some pretty strange albums.  You have to count Cream in that group of fusion artists, with Ginger Baker on drums, Eric Clapton on guitar, and Jack Bruce on bass. It isn’t all rock, but it is almost always great musicianship, with fascinating exploration.  For Bruce’s Then-Album, to accompany our review of 2014’s Silver Rails, I had intended to look at his 2009 live-version release of Seven Moons with Robin Trower. For some reason, though, I started rehearing Bruce’s Songs for a Tailor, his first solo release, and I really like it...for the first time.

Revisiting What has Not Been Revisited

When I heard it back then, about eight years after its release, purchased from a second-hand record shop, I wasn’t particularly impressed at first. I had been expecting to hear “Sunshine of Your Love” or “Strange Brew” and didn’t.  Songs like “Boston Ball Game 1967”—especially prior to the amazing group, The Baseball Project—were peculiar back then. And that song is immediately followed by a song for all time, the thoroughly underestimated “To Isengard.”

Supposedly, “To Isengard” is the one tune on Songs for a Tailor Bruce has not revisited in some way.  The rest have been and each of those other nine tunes deserves a listen, though none are as timeless as “To Isengard,” so readily accessible and enduring.

 “Theme from an Imaginary Western” is the most lauded of the rest and, interestingly, sounds the most like Bruce’s most frequent co-artist’s former band, Robin Trower’s Procol Harum.   Whether it is “Rope Ladder to the Moon” or “The Ministry of Bag”—or any of the other tunes on the album—the bass is amazing. Spend some time with “He the Richmond” and get a notion of that era for this level of musician and check out Bagism. 






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