David Bennett Cohen is best known for being the driving force of the Bay Area sixties band, Country Joe and the Fish. Cohen was the original organist as well as the lead guitar player for the band, while teaming up with Joe McDonald and Barry Melton.
Cohen has been a professional musician for more than thirty years. He studied classical piano, then at the age of fourteen, he got hooked on boogie-woogie! Since then, Cohen has explored a variety of musical styles, from blues to pop music. Cohen's keyboard antics have been likened to those of Professor Longhair, Dr. John and James Booker. Although Cohen is equally accomplished on the guitar, his latest album, "In The Pocket" is a keyboard player's delight!
An instrumental album, Cohen kicks off this journey with an energetic, "Mo's Boogie!" He moves right into, "Hannah's Aunt," which is a fun, playful tune. "American Beauty" begins with a light-hearted introduction, then has a wonderful laid-back feeling, with the bass seemingly pulling the upper keys back. His playing is energetic and light, yet never rushing through to the next phrase. Cohen changes from the hard-hitting, boogie-woogie keyboard style to a modern smooth jazz style in his, "Blue Silk." His touch on the keys is light, fluid and elegant. What's more--his sweet guitar playing mirrors the soft, soulful sound of his keyboard playing.
"Crawfish Jubilee" is pure, light-hearted boogie-woogie, toe-tappin' fun! "Louisiana Nocturne" is a traditional laid-back blues tune. Cohen's "Treasures of the Heart" leads off with the piano, answered by the guitar. This anthem-like tune has a powerful feel and builds up with intensity, into a grand finish!
Cohen throws in the delightful, "Rockin' Pneumonia" before topping the album off with his solo piano performance of "Georgia (On My Mind.)" He takes plenty of liberties, while making the most of this popular, memorable melody.
Cohen's album, "In The Pocket" is a delight for music lovers of all ages! His keyboard playing is fluid yet energetic, smooth yet sassy, exhilarating yet laid-back. This CD is packed full of sweet instrumental melodies as well as smokin' boogie-woogie fun!
Web site: www.davidbennettcohen.com
This review is copyright © 2001 by Lisa Gault, and Blues On Stage, all rights reserved. Copy, duplication or download prohibited without written permission. For permission to use this review please send an E-mail to Ray Stiles.
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