The Cokers

We're Gonna Bop: The Complete Coker Family Recordings on Abbott and Decca: 1954-1957

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AllMusic Review by

The Cokers never released a single under that specific name. There were plenty of variations on this family band, with father Al having several singles on his own and his daughter Alvadean recording many more, while son Sandy also had a few sides on his own -- and all the while, mother Geraldine played bass and wrote songs. Bear Family's We're Gonna Bop - The Complete Coker Family Recordings on Abbott and Decca: 1954-1957 collects 32 tracks the group recorded in various iterations, including Al performing with the Anita Kerr Quartet and Alvadean singing with Jim Reeves, for the two labels over those four years, including a hefty dose of unreleased cuts from the family vaults. This Californian country band was versatile, perhaps to a fault; they could do so many things, they could never develop a distinctive personality. Nevertheless, their ability to flit between scaled-down big-band pop, hillbilly, country boogie, and proto-rockabilly is impressive and does capture a particular era in the '50s, right before Bakersfield changed the dynamics of Californian country. Some of this material does sound a tad precocious, particularly the cutesy pop from Alvadean that opens up the compilation, but once this starts alternating between Al and Sandy tracks, the range and finesse of the Cokers start to impress.

Track Listing

Sample Title/Composer Performer Time
1 2:26
2 2:06
3 2:21
4 2:08
5 2:35
6 2:30
7
feat: Sandy Coker
1:59
8
feat: Sandy Coker
2:05
9 2:34
10 2:16
11 2:02
12
feat: Al Coker
2:05
13
feat: Al Coker
2:06
14
feat: Sandy Coker
2:05
15
feat: Sandy Coker
2:06
16 2:28
17 2:43
18
feat: Al Coker
2:06
19
feat: Al Coker
2:04
20
feat: Sandy Coker
2:17
21
feat: Sandy Coker
2:16
22 2:54
23
feat: Al Coker
2:00
24
feat: Al Coker
2:17
25
2:16
26 2:13
27
feat: Sandy Coker
2:17
28
feat: Sandy Coker
2:01
29
feat: Sandy Coker
1:51
30
feat: Sandy Coker
1:57
31
2:25
32
2:11
blue highlight denotes track pick