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Bass Player for Influential '60s Rock Band Cream Dies at 71

Bruce was the primary vocalist and penned the music for some of Creams's best-known songs, including "Sunshine of Your Love" and "White Room."

Jack Bruce, bass player, vocalist, and songwriter for influential 1960s rock band Cream, has died. He was 71.

Jack Bruce (Image source: Biography.com) Jack Bruce (Image source: Biography.com)

A statement released by Bruce's family announced his death Saturday, saying, "the world of music will be a poorer place without him but he lives on in his music and forever in our hearts." Publicist Claire Singers said Bruce died at his home in Suffolk, England.

Cream, which also included guitarist Eric Clapton and drummer Ginger Baker, sold 35 million albums in just over two years and were awarded the world's first ever platinum disc for their album "Wheels of Fire."

While Clapton's guitar prowess earned him the most attention before, during, and after the trio's run, Bruce was the primary vocalist and penned the music for some of Creams's best-known songs, including "Sunshine of Your Love" and "White Room."

Formed in 1966, Cream was a volatile mix of personalities; Bruce and Baker frequently fought leaving Clapton frustrated, and the band called it quits in 1968. But each member was arguably the best at his craft, and their fiery rapport drove Cream's performances and creativity, leaving a legacy that's influenced and inspired countless musicians to this day. Cream was inducted into the Rock and Roll Hall of Fame in 1993.

While a reunion seemed unlikely — due primarily to Clapton's reluctance given his success as a solo artist in the decades following the band's demise — Cream took the stage again in 2005 for a series of concerts at London's Royal Albert Hall and New York City's Madison Square Garden.

Here's a clip of "White Room" from the 2005 reunion:

The Associated Press contributed to this story.

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