Monday, 27 August 2007
Richard Cook 1957-2007...
Today came the sad news a lot of people in the know had been expecting - Richard Cook's long battle against cancer finally came to an end at the weekend. Despite making a recovery, an unexpected relapse saw him returning to hospital and, sadly, he never got to leave.
I knew his writing long before I ever joined his reviews team at the magazine. He co-authored the jazz-bible The Penguin Guide to Jazz on CD, influencing many a purchase in the days before I gave up on expanding my library. Other notable books include a popular and acclaimed history of Blue Note records and more recently a volume about Miles Davis.
I never got to know Richard beyond the briefest exchanges of emails. I had the utmost respect though for his strong editorial line and his refusal to compromise in the production of a quality publication. That I've lasted for 5 years at his magazine tells me I must have been doing something right. Despite it being very much a team effort, it's hard to imagine the magazine without his passion and energy.
A small tribute to Richard, which reprints many of his articles from a long career that included work with the NME, Mojo and The Wire, can be found here.
There's really not much more I can say, but follow the link to find out what made him one of the best music writers bar none - as well as articles on Nina Simone and Charlie Parker you'll find him covering Scott Walker, The Police and even Frank Sinatra. His writing is ultimately the best tribute possible...