My most musical friend, Dave Clark, who calls me “Smudger” — I call him “Clarkie” (because I’m really clever) — has a million stories from his days in London, when he was working security for many, many of the rock shows. I should have known that he’d have a great one about the late bass-playing legend Jack Bruce, and he just posted it on Facebook:
“Every year, for a number of years, I’d work the Eric Clapton residencies at the Royal Albert Hall, anywhere between 12 to 24 per season. And every year, on a number of occasions, a bloke would regularly stop by where I was working and we’d have a good chat, catching up and I could never work out just who it was that I’d been speaking to.
“Then one time, Eric’s tour manager came up to me and said, ‘If you see Jack Bruce and he’s pissed, you tell him to fuck off!’
“Fifteen minutes later, that same bloke I’d been speaking to for years approached my door and said, ‘Hello, mate …’
“And I said, ‘Oh, alright Jack, you better go down …’
“After all of those years, meetings and chats, the penny finally dropped. He was a lovely man and he left a valuable contribution to music. R.I.P., Jack. You were one of the good guys.”