David Bennett Cohen

Cookin' with Cohen

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David Bennett Cohen will probably always be best remembered for the time he spent in the late '60s as keyboardist for Berkeley's Country Joe & the Fish. But his career since that band's demise has been varied and his chops are no less diminished on this album of blues, jazz, and boogies. Working with a basic electric guitar-bass-drums combo augmented by percussion, Cohen keeps things simple and strong on the mostly instrumental set. "Funky Peaches" and "Crawfish Royale" display a predilection toward the deep funk beats of the South and offer the instrumentalists plenty of stretching room -- the latter track should appeal to fans of the Neville Brothers and Little Feat. And while the world probably can live without another version of "When the Saints Go Marching In," the spirited one offered here gives Cohen an ideal format in which to bust out a boogie-woogie that would easily get them on their feet at the New Orleans Jazz Fest. The only real misstep is "We All Want Peace in Our Time," a song whose sentiment no one with a heart and mind would deny, but whose lyrics state its case in a sophomoric way.

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