CREAM Drummer GINGER BAKER: ‘I Loathe And Detest Heavy Metal’
Legendary rock drummer Ginger Baker, whose resume includes Cream, Blind Faith and Public Image LTD, has slammed heavy metal as “an abortion”.
Baker, who gained a reputation as the most uncontrollable musician on the scene, was the subject of a 2013 documentary, “Beware Of Mr. Baker”, which painted the title character as a chain-smoking, profanity-spewing, mean-spirited, entitled, grouchy, vile and self-destructive man with otherworldly talent and tragic flaws.
Asked in a brand new interview with Forbes.com what his take is on heavy metal, Baker responded: “These people that dress up in spandex trousers with all the extraordinary makeup — I find it incredibly repulsive, always have.
“I’ve seen where Cream is sort of held responsible for the birth of heavy metal. Well, I would definitely go for aborting. [Laughs] I loathe and detest heavy metal. I think it is an abortion.
“A lot of these guys come up and say, ‘Man, you were my influence, the way you thrashed the drums.’ They don’t seem to understand I was thrashing in order to hear what I was playing. It was anger, not enjoyment — and painful. I suffered on stage because of that [high amplifier] volume crap. I didn’t like it then, and like it even less now.
“That whole Rock And Roll Hall Of Fame thing — at least half the people in there don’t have a place in any kind of hall of fame anywhere, in my opinion.”
Baker also offered his colorful take on Led Zeppelin’s late drummer John Bonham, saying: “Years ago, John said, ‘There are two drummers in rock and roll, Ginger Baker and me.’ There’s no way John was anywhere near what I am. He wasn’t a musician.”
He continued: “A lot of people don’t realize I studied. I can write music. I used to write big band parts in 1960, ’61. I felt that if I was a drummer, I needed to learn to read drum music. I was so good at side reading, a guy in one of the big bands told me to get two books. I studied them at the same time. One was about the rules of basic harmony, the other how to break them all. [Laughs]”