WBGO Radar

The Cookers: Time And Time Again

The Cookers' CD Time And Time Again

Everything old is new again. For a musician true to the jazz canon, that's the creative mind.

So what happens when you put seven musical minds together, who collectively amass over 250 years of experience in the kitchens of Art Blakey, Max Roach, Charles Lloyd, Herbie Hancock and Lee Morgan?

Each of these seven also has a unique musical voice, so when they add their outstanding individualism to the mix, you get wise sages, a group now seven years young - The Cookers.

The Cookers are Billy Harper on tenor sax, Eddie Henderson and David Weiss on trumpets, Donald Harrison on alto sax, George Cables on piano, Cecil McBee on bass and Billy Hart at the drums. 

Time And Time Again, The Cookers' fourth release, shows their depth and breadth as composers and improvisers.

A reworked version of Billy Harper's "Sir Galahad," which first appeared on his 1973 debut recording Capra Black is alongside two brand-new compositions by bassist Cecil McBee. You also hear tunes from Billy Hart, George Cables and David Weiss.

Alto saxist Donald Harrison makes his Cookers recording debut, adding his usual fire to the mix.

The push and pull each gives to the collective expression results in nine tunes of adventurous delight. As Nate Chinen of The New York Times says, " This is a dream team of forward-leaning hard bop."

Says David Weiss of his bandmates, "The process of rehearsing this music, bringing it to life and then performing and recording it is an amazing experience for me, these brilliant musicians still surprise me on a regular basis."

Nice surprises don't just happen on birthdays. Time and time again, it can happen when creativity and competency meet in music.

The Cookers new recording comes out September 16th. Their live surprises come to The Hamilton Stage in Rahway, New Jersey September 13th. 

   - Gary Walker, WBGO music director

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