|Band Members:||Tim Hammel (Trumpet)
Ryan Oliver (Sax)
Richard Whiteman (Piano)
Alex Coleman (Bass)
Joel Haynes (Drums)
The Cookers was started in March of 2010 as a way that 5 like-minded musicians could play together on a weekly basis and create an environment where original music could be played in a club setting. As the weeks progressed, the musicians involved began to see the potential for so much more. The group had become part of an artistic community, through regular performance and was trying to further this ideal in the face of a challenging artistic climate. Band members’ students were coming down regularly to hear their teachers, garnering inspiration from the experience, and a group of regulars began showing up each week as word got out. Though several of Toronto’s long-standing jazz clubs are gone, the Cookers hoped to create some kind of an alternative, no matter how small; a place where down-the-middle Canadian jazz could be heard on a regular basis.
The resultant recording is a continuation of this concept; a collective mentality that hopes to increase cultural awareness of Canadian original music, swinging all the while. The group’s first recording was made possible by each musician’s deep commitment to the music and the cause. This recording is a true example of Canadian music at a grass roots level, created at a time when the arts are far from the main focus of our society, yet created nonetheless.
Bassist Alex Coleman is a Vegreville native.
[from The Cookers Official Press Kit]