10 Questions with ... Jeff Cook
June 17, 2013
BRIEF CAREER SYNOPSIS:
Musician, songwriter, promotion for Arista, Elektra, Capricorn, New West and now Coherent Music.
1. What got you interested in the music business?
I have always been more interested in the music than the music business. Hearing a song on the radio, as a kid, that sent a jolt of electricity down my spine and set me on a life-long course of pursuing music regardless of what the profit margin was going to be in the next quarter!
2. What was your favorite station to listen to when you were a kid?
WLS/Chicago, and KDKO and KIMN in Denver.
3. Tell us a bit about your musician days before getting in the business side?
Played in local bands in Denver and hooked up Tommy Bolin to form Energy. We began writing songs together which were eventually recorded by Tommy Bolin, James Gang, Deep Purple, Motley Crue, Warren Haynes, John Scofield and others.
4. What have been some of your biggest career highlights?
Working with YOU and Clive Davis at Arista; Mike Bone and Brad Hunt at Elektra; The ONE AND ONLY PHIL WALDEN at Capricorn (every day with him was an adventure and he was the most passionate music person I have ever known); and working with the NEW President of Warner Bros Records, Cameron Strang, at New West.
5. What new artists are you most excited about?
In no particular order Delta Saints (new band from Nashville), Frank Turner, Treetop Flyers, Clairy Browne, Laura Mvula and Delta Rae.
6. Every promotion person has a record close to their heart that for one reason or another never broke through -- "The One That Got Away." What is your "One That Got Away," and what did you learn from that record?
I have always felt that any track I was working had the potential to work at radio, however, sometimes radio begged to differ. There is not one specific track that comes to mind.
7. What's the wildest thing you ever did to get "the add" at a station?
The wildest I ever did I could never tell! But once, in a vain attempt to get the Thompson Twins "Hold Me Tight" played, I invaded a PD's office while he was at lunch and plastered his whole office ... walls, phone, chairs with posters of the band.
8. Tell us about the books you have written.
One is about a spiritual mentor of mine that was a graduate of Attica prison and had become enlightened in there. We had a 10-year friendship and he imparted a lot of wisdom about living and life. The other book is part travelog and part memoir about my 25 years of practicing Tai Chi. It covers my two trips to China in 1986 and 2012, the astounding places I have seen, and the incredible Masters I have trained with over the years.
9. What would surprise people most about you?
That, like most people ... I am full of surprises!
10. If you were to leave the record business today and you could choose any other occupation, what would it be?
I would like to be a banker, lawyer, stock broker, or work at FOX News; these are the only occupations where you get to lie more than a promotion person!
Last non-industry job:
Never had one
First record ever purchased:
"Raining In My Heart" by Slim Harpo (no kidding)
James Brown/Bobby Bland at the Baja Club (no kidding )
Favorite bands of all-time:
Free, Savoy Brown, The Meters, Galactic, The JB's
What do you enjoy doing in your spare time away from work?
I enjoy the AWAY part!