Jack Bruce ‎– Songs For A Tailor

Polydor ‎– 065 603-2, Universal ‎– 065 603-2
CD, Album, Reissue, Remastered




  • Barcode (Text): 0 44006 56032 8
  • Barcode (String): 044006560328
  • Matrix / Runout: DISCTRONICS 0656032 01
  • Other (Moulded inner ring text): MADE IN THE UK BY UNIVERSAL M & L
  • Mastering SID Code: IFPI L135
  • Mould SID Code (Variant 1): IFPI 04G9
  • Mould SID Code (Variant 2): IFPI 04H2
  • Label Code: LC 00309
  • Rights Society: BIEM MCPS

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Songs For A Tailor is much less blues orientated than one would think or have expected, especially considering Jack Bruce’s work with Cream, and the fact that the Blind Faith album would be released in this year as well. Interestingly enough, nearly all of the lyrics have been penned by Pete Brown [and resound with a bit of pretentious silliness], who was responsible for Cream’s most influential lyrics, where the songs come across as a reflection of Jack Bruce’s personality at the time, feeling rather fragile and bruised, laying out a bit of white English soul that’s nicely counterbalanced by his strong blues additions. With the album opening with a guest appearance by L’Angelo Misterioso, better known to the world as George Harrison, though his guitar work is much less front and center than it had been on the Cream song “Badge,” we’re off to a great start, especially under the guiding hand of Felix Pappalardi, though it won’t last long.

Bruce does what so many solo artists do, and that’s to feature his instrument, in this case the bass, and while he’s a fine bass player, featuring his instrument front and center does lead to a feeling of poor production, as for me, the drums and bass are supportive instruments that certainly can solo, but neither should be so present that listeners are acutely aware of them, especially having their presentation so centrally positioned. This was another album that Rolling Stone Magazine did not appreciate, saying, ”Songs For A Tailor is a disappointment, a mere patchwork affair lacking in unifying thread, a baggy misfit mad up of a shopworn miscellany of jazz riffs, rock underpinnings, chamber music strings, boringly baroque lyrics, and a Bruce bass that leaves everything bottom heavy.” I personally couldn’t have said it any better, though perhaps I would have dropped in the words ‘self indulgent.’

That being said, there are many, mostly progressive music fans, who adore this album, citing it as inspirational and inspired many to follow more deeply in his footsteps … some even claiming that the song “Theme For An Imaginary West” sounds like it could have been a long lost Cream track, fleshed out, and recently brought into the light. With this only supporting the fact that listeners either are totally raptured by this outing, or that it pales in respect to the work Bruce laid down with Cream, and what his mates would later do with Blind Faith. Regardless, it’s a release that one should certainly listen to a couple of times and see where it does or doesn’t lead.

*** The Fun Facts: The album’s title, Songs For A Tailor, was a tribute of sorts to Cream’s recently deceased clothing designer.

Review by Jenell Kesler