sad news from Bob Corritore
RIP Leroy Cooper 8/31/1928-1/15/2009: Leroy Cooper, Ray Charles's long time baritone sax and bandleader, died on January 15, 2009. He was 80. He passed away with relatively little fanfare, especially when contrasting the press concerning his friend and fellow Ray Charles alumni David "Fathead" Newman. Both Cooper and Fathead were around to be part of the lush horn work of Zuzu Bollin's first records and Lowell Fulson's "Reconsider Baby", and Cooper made many a great record with Ray Charles. His tenure with Ray Charles lasted from the 1950s to the 1970s, and it was there where he made his mark. For a bio and obit of this great horn player, click here. To see Leroy Cooper's MySpace page, click here. For great film clips of Leroy Cooper with the Ray Charles band, click here and here (Leroy is the one with the big bari sax). Another great musician has left us.