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Home Articles Ginger Baker: The legendary rock star that lived in Harrow

Ginger Baker: The legendary rock star that lived in Harrow

Hailed by many respected artists as one of the greatest drummers of his generation, Peter Edward ‘Ginger’ Baker lived in Harrow on the Hill in the 1960s.

The virtuoso wild-man revolutionised drumming. The nickname ‘Ginger’ stemmed from his fiery red hair and explosive character.

Ginger, learnt his craft under the tutelage of Phil Seamen, one of the leading British jazz drummers of the 1940s. Phil was heavily influenced by African drumming and encouraged Ginger to study African rhythm.

Visiting his first wife and daughter Nettie in North Harrow. Credit: Nettie Baker.

The house in Harrow on the Hill bore the essences of the African continent, with sculpted furniture and drum kits until the family were evicted in 1985.

Credit: Harrow Observer/Nettie Baker

A self-proclaimed jazz drummer, Ginger Baker gained worldwide exposure from the rock band ‘Cream’ headed by lead guitarist Eric Clapton, with Jack Bruce on bass. Despite their incredible successes, Cream only lasted for two years before disbanding.

The band’s impact on the music scene inspired groups like Rush, The Police and Pink Floyd. Ginger Baker is commonly referred to as the godfather of metal-rock drumming, a title he adamantly denounced.

Ginger Baker at his mother in laws house, North Avenue, West Harrow. Credit: Nettie Baker

A cantankerous figure with his unpredictable temperament, Ginger Baker was a also a musical genius with a fascinating character. A documentary called ‘Beware of Mr Baker’ will reveal more if one is intrigued.

In addition, his daughter Nettie has penned three highly rated books about her famous father. These include ‘Tales of a Rock Star’s Daughter’, ‘More Tales of a Rock Star’s Daughter’ which contains a wild story about Jimi Hendrix visiting Ginger in Harrow, and Hellraiser, Ginger’s autobiography.

All books are available on Amazon and Wymer.