The UK’s Classic Rock awards are normally a relatively genteel affair for old rockers happy to be recognised in the autumns of their careers.
No-one obviously spread the message of bonhomie to Cream bassist Jack Bruce. In an astonishing outburst, he called Led Zeppelin’s reunion “lame” and Jimmy Page a “crap” guitarist.
Bruce was attending the awards show to accept the Classic Album award for Cream’s Disraeli Gears, released in 1967, but it was his after-show interview which has made the headlines.
Bruce was speaking to Classic Rock’s writer Dave Ling.
Dave Ling: It’s good news that there might be more from Cream?
Jack Bruce: “Well, the trouble is that I’m doing so many amazing things on my own. Cream is just a band from many, many years ago, and we did do something [referring to the reunion shows in 2005]…
“Everybody talks about Led Zeppelin, and they played one fucking gig – one fucking lame gig – while Cream did weeks of gigs. Proper gigs, not just a lame gig like Zeppelin did, with all the [vocal] keys lowered and everything.
“We played everything in the original keys. [Becoming animated]: Fuck off, Zeppelin, you’re crap. You’ve always been crap and you’ll never be anything else. The worst thing is that people believe the crap that they’re sold. Cream is 10 times the band that Led Zeppelin is.”
Ling: That’s a bold opinion.
Bruce: “What? You’re gonna compare Eric Clapton with that fucking Jimmy Page? Would you really compare that?”
Ling: To be fair, they’re different kinds of player, aren’t they?
Bruce: “No! Eric’s good and Jimmy’s crap. And with that I rest my case.”
At the earlier awards ceremony, other winners included:
Band Of The Year – Foo Fighters
Living Legend – Ozzy Osbourne
Showman Of The Year – Paul Stanley from Kiss
Event Of The Year – Led Zeppelin at London’s O2 (December ’07)
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