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The Cookers

  • SFJAZZ Miner Auditorium 201 Franklin Street San Francisco, CA, 94102 United States (map)
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The Cookers have each made an estimable mark on the jazz world as both leaders and sidemen since the 1960s. Founded by acclaimed trumpeter David Weiss, the band is made up of a dizzying array of jazz giants. The Cookers bring to the bandstand an expressive language developed through decades of work interpreting and interacting with tunes. This exciting all-star septet summons up an aggressive mid ‘60s spirit with a potent collection of expansive post-bop originals marked by pyrotechnic playing.

Billy Harper, Cecil McBee, George Cables, Eddie Henderson, and Billy Hart all came up in the heady era of the mid ‘60s. It was a period that found the dimensions of hard bop morphing from their original designs, and each of these guys helped facilitate the process as members of some of the most important bands of the era - including those led by Herbie Hancock’s groundbreaking Mwandishi group, Charles Lloyd’s great ’60s quartet alongside Keith Jarrett and Jack DeJohnette; Max Roach’s Quartet and Art Blakey and the Jazz Messengers, and groups led by Sonny Rollins, Joe Henderson, Freddie Hubbard, Dexter Gordon and Art Pepper.

David Weiss and Donald Harrison, from a more recent generation and the youngest members of the band, are experts in this forthright lingo, having gained experience performing with Art Blakey, Bobby Hutcherson, Freddie Hubbard, Charles Tolliver, Roy Haynes and Herbie Hancock.

From their inception and release of their debut album, Warriors, The Cookers have decidedly been a band, not a one-off assemblage of veterans playing a predictable list of standards. Quite the opposite – they are a cohesive unit performing their own finely wrought compositions with more fire and passion than the generations of musicians they’ve inspired.

(They) are some of the best composers, arrangers and musicians we have in jazz, and they’re working together in one of the most exciting super-groups we’ve seen in a long, long time.
— Downbeat
The Cookers are hard-wired into the golden era of jazz history, but they use tradition as a foundation for creative fury in the present moment.
— JazzTimes
Earlier Event: June 18
Sasha Berliner
Later Event: June 18
Sasha Berliner