Doc Cook

Charles L. Cooke (1891 – 1958), known as Doc Cook, was an American jazz bandleader and arranger. Cook was a Doctor of Music. He first worked as a composer and arranger in Detroit before moving to Chicago around 1910. Cook became resident leader of the orchestra at Paddy Harmon’s Dreamland Ballroom in Chicago from 1922 to 1927, acting as conductor and musical director. The ensemble recorded under several names, such as Cookie’s Gingersnaps, Doc Cook and his 14 Doctors of Syncopation, and Doc Cook’s Dreamland Orchestra. Among those who played in Cook’s band were Freddie Keppard, Jimmie Noone, Johnny St. Cyr, Zutty Singleton, Joe Poston, Andrew Hilaire, and Luis Russell. In 1930, Cook moved to New York City and worked as an arranger for Radio City Music Hall and RKO, working there into the 1940s. On Broadway, he had a number of important orchestration credits. A proponent of ragtime, he also worked frequently with Eubie Blake, supplying the arrangements for the 1952 revival of Shuffle Along.

Doc Cook’s Dreamland Ballroom Orchestra in 1925; left to right: Bert Green, Fred Garland, Andrew Hilaire, Freddie Keppard, Elwood Graham, William Newton, Kenneth Anderson, Jerome Don Pasquall, Jimmie Noone, Doc Cook, Joe Poston, Robert Shelley, Johnny St. Cyr, Clifford King.

These transcriptions are available to download for free for the website members. We appreciate a donation if you can afford it. Thank you!

The arrangement charts will appear below once you’re logged in.