Junior Cook

Senior Cookin': Good Cookin'/Somethin's Cookin'

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Except for one other recording, tenor saxophonist Junior Cook's two Muse albums were his only opportunities to lead his own record dates during the 1962-1987 period. 1979's Good Cookin' (played by a septet including trombonist Slide Hampton, trumpeter Bill Hardman, baritonist Mario Rivera, pianist Albert Dailey, bassist Walter Booker, and drummer Leroy Williams) and 1981's Somethin's Cookin' (a high-quality quartet showcase for Cook with pianist Cedar Walton, bassist Buster Williams, and drummer Billy Higgins) are reissued in full on this single CD, except for four alternate takes from the latter date that were included on Muse's original CD reissue. Taken as a whole, this 1998 CD gives one a definitive portrait of the underrated Junior Cook's abilities as a swinging and fairly distinctive hard bop soloist. Hampton contributed four of the six selections to the earlier date, while Walton and pianist Larry Willis wrote two songs apiece for the quartet outing. Highly recommended.

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