Legendary Cream drummer Ginger Baker dead at 80

Ginger Baker was a co-founder of Cream. Picture: AFP
Ginger Baker was a co-founder of Cream. Picture: AFP
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Ginger Baker, one of the most acclaimed rock drummers of all time, has passed away at the age of 80.

The Cream co-founder, who also played with Blind Faith, Hawkwind and Fela Kuti over the course of a career spanning decades, passed away peacefully, his daughter confirmed.

A statement released by the family online read: "We are very sad to say that Ginger has passed away peacefully in hospital this morning.

"Thank you to everyone for your kind words over the past weeks."

The family had announced on September 25 that the London-born drummer was critically ill in hospital, adding that he was "holding his own".

Nettie Baker said her father died peacefully and without pain.

The musician was noted for his groundbreaking drumming technique, and his showmanship.

Pioneering rock music in the 1960s, he maintained a jazz style and sound, helping build the unique profile of his band Cream, founded with Eric Clapton in 1966.

The group, which also included Jack Bruce, drove a change in rock music which would heavily influence the likes of Led Zeppelin and later artists.

Baker also experimented with percussion from across the globe, and held a long-time interest in African music.