Skip to comments.Little Joe Cook, singer of hit song 'Peanuts,' has died
Posted on 04/18/2014 10:11:54 AM PDT by EveningStar
Little Joe Cook, whose one big hit, "Peanuts," helped make him a local music legend, has died.
(Excerpt) Read more at bostonglobe.com ...
I wish there were more to this story. I was just last night blowing some free form fun blues harp with the percussionist Oswald Kouame in Tokyo. I’ll be doing photography for him at Sunday night’s gig in Roppongi. I love the blues.
Blues and Doo-wop, likewise. Ronnie James Dio started out with the Redcaps doo-wop band. Frank Zappa did a lot of contemporary Doo-wop thow backs too. Great post!
RIP Joe. I did not realize he was that old. Enjoyed that record when I was in Jr High in 1957.
I used to run a music agency in the early 1980s in the Boston area, and was introduced to Little Joe Cook by an associate who wanted to see if we could work out a management deal with him.
Joe was a very nice guy, and it was fun going to see him at the Cantab Lounge in Cambridge. The management deal never materialized, but at one point I had written up some draft contract language and handed it to him to read. I was shocked and a bit embarrassed for him (and me) when it became obvious that he was illiterate, and couldn’t read a word of it.
During our conversations, Joe indicated that he had been screwed out of the royalties for his song “Peanuts,” but I never did learn the details about that.
I've read many stories like that regarding artists of that era.And the fact that he was illiterate made him doubly susceptible.I suspect that there was a lot more than song writing going on in the Brill Building.
Thank you for that. I was lucky enough to see Ronnie on one of last gigs with Heaven And Hell in Tokyo in 2009 at the Loudpark festival. It was amazing! Ronnie died in May, 2010; I believe it was the 10th. I cried. I don’t mean to bogart the thread, but doo-wop, rock, rockabilly, and blues are wonderful.
In the 70’s there was a great Japanese band called “Peanuts” that did a lot of the doo-wop, bee-hive hair style, Petula Clark, Francis Sinatra, Pips, etc, fantastic music. The beginnings of amplified music in the late 40s and early 50s was a watershed moment for American music culture, and it took almost 60 years to bring that beauty to the mainstream (traditional Blues, Carribean Calypso, and slave music), (I could go on and on on this topic...)
I always enjoyed that scene from The Sopranos where the rapper character Massive Genius tries to get the royalties back from Tony's friend Hesh, who screwed some poor black songwriter out of the royalties in the 1950s.
The walk from Harvard Square to Central Square was like walking through a different dimension. There were bars in Central Square half a block off of Mass Ave that I'd wander into, order a beer at the bar and look around to see I was the only white person in the place.
There was a woman's gay bar there and I remember at closing time drunk women would stagger out of the place and pee on the sidewalk.
I was never hassled in those places, though, it was the druggies of all stripes you had to watch out for. In a flash a knife would appear or you'd get a gun stuck in your ribs. Boy, that would get your attention and concentrate your mind wonderfully.
That and the cops who would work drunks over hard.
Fot a 24 year old kid whoe grea wup in the seventies that all seemed pretty normal.
I remember seeing Little Joe Cook at the “Can-Stab Lounge” years ago. I worked near Central Square from 1981-87. It was a vastly different place from the somewhat gentrified area it is now.