This truck-driving, harmonica-blowing Bluesman won multiple awards in his hometown Minneapolis for his ace songwriting, singing and playing. Then about 10 years ago, Joe Cook moved his family to Seattle and had to start his musical career over again. He started going to some of the many local Blues jam sessions, where he met and teamed up with some of this area’s hottest Blues players.
Joe’s massive harmonica “chops” and intensity remind me of Little Walter, Kim Wilson and Sugar Blue. A gravelly voice suited to singing the Blues, and a knack for writing catchy original tunes makes him a triple threat. It’s no wonder that he was able to attract such able band-mates.
Northwest Blues fans will recognize guitarist Tim Sherman, who has won multiple awards from the Washington Blues Society for his work with Isaac Scott, Little Bill, Dave Conant and Mark Dufresne. A consummate player, Tim doesn’t rely on pedal effects, choosing to plug his vintage Stratocaster into a Fender amp and letting his fingers do the talking. He can be flashy when he wants to but is also adept at playing essential (but less flashy) rhythm guitar.
Bassist Patty Mey and drummer Conrad Ormsby are key to the band’s easy swinging sound that includes influences of Chicago, Texas and West Coast Blues. Both of these players have an intuitive sense of rhythmic motion that goes way beyond the notes that are played. This band has a great frontman and guitarist, but the music “feels” good because of these two.
You can see the Joe T. Cook Blues Band playing around the Northwest and look for Joe’s studio album Longshot, which is getting airplay on All Blues!