CREAM – ” Goodbye ” Released 5th February 1969

Posted: February 16, 2016 in CLASSIC ALBUMS, MUSIC
Tags: , , , ,

Cream Say ‘Goodbye’

Cream may have had all too short a lifespan as far as their millions of admirers around the world were concerned — but at least they had the chance to say ‘Goodbye’ to each other. That, of course, was the title of the trio’s fourth and final studio album, released a few weeks after they announced that they would soon be splitting. The album made its American chart debut 47 years ago exactly, on February 15, 1969.

It had been an eventful few months for Eric Clapton, Jack Bruce and Ginger Baker, who had only released the preceding album, ‘Wheels Of Fire,’ the previous July in the UK. Then came the announcement that Cream would call it quits after a farewell tour that autumn.

With a shortage of material available, ‘Goodbye’ was something of a mixed bag. Just as ‘Wheels Of Fire’ had (in its double LP version) been one disc of studio recordings and another of live performances, the final album was another 50-50 split. Three of its six tracks were recorded at the Forum in Los Angeles on that last tour. 19th October 1968 . The other tracks recorded October 1968 at IBC Studios in London, UK.

But the record did boast a very fresh and newsworthy studio number, and one written by Clapton with George Harrison, no less: ‘Badge’ featured George, or “L’Angelo Mysterioso” as he had to be credited for contractual reasons, on rhythm guitar. The song became, in many eyes, the last classic Cream number, and went on to reach the UK top 20 as a single.

Badge was written by Eric Clapton and George Harrison. In Georges handwritten lyrics he wrote the word “Bridge” as in bridge of a song and Clapton thought that it was “Badge” so they named the song that.

It appeared on Cream’s final album “Goodbye.”Ringo Star threw in a line also.

George Harrison on writing Badge with Clapton

I helped Eric write “Badge” you know. Each of them had to come up with a song for that Goodbye Cream album and Eric didn’t have his written. We were working across from each other and I was writing the lyrics down and we came to the middle part so I wrote ‘Bridge.’ Eric read it upside down and cracked up laughing – ‘What’s BADGE?’ he said. After that, Ringo [Starr] walked in drunk and gave us that line about the swans living in the park

I like when a band does something different. After blitzing audiences with Crossroads, Whiteroom, Sunshine of Your Love, and Strange Brew…out comes this song. It’s not my favorite Cream song…that would be Badge but this one always makes me smile.

The song was written by Eric Clapton and Martin Sharp for the movie “Savage Seven.” Unfortunately, this was nearing the end of Cream’s run.

Cream appeared on the Smothers Brothers and mimed this song. Who the hell knows what it means but when I heard “And the elephants are dancing on the graves of squealing mice. Anyone for tennis, wouldn’t that be nice?” I was hooked. It’s hard to get it out of your head once you listen to it.

‘Goodbye’ made its US chart entry on Billboard’s Top LPs chart, as it was called at the time, at No. 107, as ‘The Beatles’ moved back to No. 1. In a 26-week chart run, it spent two weeks at No. 2 in March, held off the top spot by Glen Campbell’s ‘Wichita Lineman.’

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