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The Pope's Prayer For the Dead

52 Guitars: Week 45

Gary Moore

When Jack Bruce died a week or two ago, all the obituaries described him as "former Cream bassist." But Cream only existed for a couple of years, and Bruce had a very long and productive career afterwards, including several albums which are more interesting to me than Cream's stuff. He worked with a lot of people, including several in a guitar-bass-drums trio format that naturally seemed an attempt to revisit or revive or surpass Cream. In reading the obits, I learned of the existence of one of these I'd never heard of before: BBM, for Baker, Bruce, and Moore, or perhaps Bruce, Baker, and Moore.

"Moore" was Gary Moore, and until he died several years ago his name meant nothing to me. I saw obituaries saying, as with Bruce, that the "former Thin Lizzie guitarist" had passed away. Well, that didn't mean much, either, as the only thing I'd ever heard by Thin Lizzie was that '70s radio anthem, "The Boys Are Back in Town." But a European friend posted this video of "Still Got the Blues" on Facebook, and it got my attention.


It seems that, as with Bruce, Moore's career encompassed much more than a fairly brief stint with a popular band. I've heard him described as "under-rated," and that certainly seems to be true, at least as far as attention on this side of the Atlantic (he was Irish) was concerned. 

One of the legendary Roy Buchanan's signature pieces was the instrumental "The Messiah Will Come Again." It takes a lot of nerve for anyone else to play it--not that the tune itself is difficult, but Buchanan loaded it up with such spectacular fireworks that I wouldn't think anyone would be eager to put himself in the position of being compared to him. But Moore did,


 And about BBM: my opinion, after hearing their one album on Rdio a couple of times, is that it's good but the songwriting is less than inspired. And to tell the truth Baker and Bruce don't exactly seem to be on fire. You might expect that in such a combination the guitarist would suffer from the inevitable comparisons to Eric Clapton. But he's actually the strong point. I hesitate to say this, but he's at least as good and interesting a player as Clapton. Here is BBM live, "White Room":



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Just found your site and your comments.
Thank you for posing these videos. "Wheels of Fire" was my first album ever purchased. Expensive for this young teenager at the time. Still have the very same one (somewhat deteriorated).
I am sorry now (kicking myself) that I did not follow Baker and Bruce into their phase with Gary Moore.
Thank you, again.

You're welcome. That was a good choice for first album. It's not too late to hear the BBM album, you know.

I'm contacting a well-connected friend this week. He can acquire any music. I will ask him about the BBM album.
Funny story:
I attended a concert at the recently-built (1973) "Rich Stadium" outside Buffalo, New York in 1974. The bill included; Jesse Colin Young, Santana, and CSNY.
About 5 years ago this friend of mine mailed me a double cd recording of that exact concert, which was not officially recorded. Nearly 40 years afterwards. I understand that he acquired it on the internet. Thank you again for posting the videos.

In principle I don't approve of this, but I'll tell you anyway: the entire BBM album can be found on YouTube. Seems like everything can.

Agreed. The internet has seemingly impacted an artist's livelihood in a negative way.
The story about my friend accessing music on the internet perhaps needs a bit of clarifying. He has shared with me that there are sources which do involve a transaction. He indicated to me long ago that he does pay for music. All of it? I am not certain.
As for me? I miss those days when I would travel to a brick and mortar location to peruse a plethora of music choices. Marveling at album art. Reading liner notes. Sometimes my mission was laser focused. Other times I would find something unexpectedly and simply take a "flyer" on it. That is how I came across Ry Cooder's solo album (digital recording) in 1980. At a store called, "Peaches", in Fort Lauderdale, FL. That is but one example. Far too many to list here.

Seems like everything can.

Including this:

Height of irony.


Ha. I was going to mention that song.


I just want to remind everyone that this is Week 45, which means that week 52 is very close and they have commitments.


Yes, I was planning to post something about that this weekend.

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