BIOGRAPHY The Reds is the only suitable phrase for the smooth, sensuous style of guitar playing that Craig T. Cooper has mastered. Not all blues, not all jazz, Craig T. is the The Uncola of Jazz and just plain Funky-Sexy Craig T. Cooper is a recording artist, producer, songwriter, arranger, M.D., sound engineer, programmer, mix and re-mix master, owner of CRAIGLAND Studios, LA and an all around damn good musician. His credits are endless and his experience is invaluable. So, lets start at the beginning.Who is Craig T. Cooper?

Craig T. Cooper, the youngest of seven children, was born and raised in Los Angeles, California. As a young child, he exhibited signs of immense musical talent. His musical talents first became apparent at the tender age of four. Soon after he began cello lessons, he hoped to follow in his brother Rons footsteps, who is a world-renowned cellist. Craigs thirst for music was unquenchable and he progressed from cello to the trumpet, drums, and piano and finally guitar his instrument of choice. Not only did he have a unique aptitude for the guitar it didnt take long for him to establish his own identity as a studio musician and soloist. Combined with his creative flair and electronic background, Craig became a force to be reckoned with early in his music career.

1984 marked the beginning of his rise to prominence as a studio musician. His first big break with El DeBarge subsequently led to non-stop studio work. He honed his craft and refined his style as he worked with such musical luminaries as; Anita Baker, Bob Dylan, Barry Manilow, The Boys, Rochelle Ferrell, The OJays, Vesta Williams, George Duke, Patrice Rushen, Lalah Hathaway, Klymaxx, LeVert, The Jacksons, The Crusaders, and Tone Loc. To diversify, he worked on numerous movie soundtracks and his own pet projects. On occasion Craig T. also hit the road and toured with Cheryl Lynn, Billy Preston, Ronnie Laws, LSG, Gerald LeVert, Rahsaan Patterson, and many others.

Subsequent to his touring, Craig T. was signed to Valley Vue Records in 1989, which spawned four critically acclaimed albums: CRAIG T. COOPER PROJECT (1989), GOT THAT THANG (1990), DARKMN (1991) and GREATEST HITS (1994). His collaboration with singer/songwriter Denise Stewart would lead to the Standard Quality Time from the GOT THAT THANG album. Craig T. wrote and produced the material, he also played all the instruments as well as programmed, mixed and remixed the albums. These unique abilities lead to engineering and mixing other records. Many artists, to name a few, would contribute their talents to his original projects over the years such as The Late Joe Sample, Bobby Lyle, George Duke, Patrice Rushen, the Jazz Crusaders, Gerald Albright, Howard Hewitt, Ray Parker Jr., Gerald LeVert, and the most unusual being a harmonica solo featuring Mykelti Williamson of Forrest Gump, Waiting To Exhale "Nashville" and Ali.

His success on Valley Vue Records inspired SIN-DROME records to sign him in 1995. Craig completed two wonderful releases from the label; the first being TOUCH-TONE (1995), which features his label-mates The Late Wayne Henderson and Wilton Felder of the Jazz Crusaders on the hit single Can I Still Play With The Band?. And the second named ROMANTIC LETTER (1996) featuring cover tunes such as Sensitivity (penned by Jimmy Jam & Terry Lewis) and Never Too Much (written by Luther Vandross) reaped some very positive responses from the Masters themselves! In fact they were totally knocked out by Craigs unusually bold treatment to their hits. CAUGHT UP IN A MOMENT (2001) featuring Gerald Levert with a cover of the hit Pop,Pop Goes My Mind which CTC did the original production. Also on the CD features Gerald Albright and Kevin Toney just to name a few.  Craig T's 8th album HOUR GLASS featuring Ronnie Laws, Kevin Toney, Val Watson (Club Neuvou) and others, with a classic remake of Michael Jackson's Smash Hit "Butterflies", and yes it's simply mesmerizing.

Craig T's 9th CD is entitled "NASTY MAN", which features living legend Ronnie Laws and his son Jaman Laws on sax, legendary drummer Ndugu Chancler, The Blackbyrds own Kevin Toney, The Gifted Pianist Aya Iwata from Japan, and more. This album features the funky, get nasty, roots side of Craig T's aura. Craig Ts 10th and Current CD, and GRAMMY NOMINATED is entitled PURPOSE, which celebrates his 25th year as a solo artist. This CD includes living legends Ray Parker Jr, Howard Hewett, Patrice Rushen, Ronnie Laws, The Blackbyrds, Denise Stewart, Jim Gilstrap, David T. Walker, and more……….

 

Craig T. was blessed to not only do session work for the sitcom "The BERNIE MAC SHOW", but also had Bernie's opening song for his stand-up act "Darkman Pt III". Craig T. Toured with LSG (Gerald LeVert, Keith Sweat & Johnny Gill), as their guitarist and featured on the Multi-platinum LSG release "ShakeDown", and hit gold single "Door Number One" from LSG's first album. Currently hes back in the studio with Living Legend Saxophonist Ronnie Laws.

His long time friendship and musical association with Gerald LeVert, blessed him a gold record for the hit single Baby You Are which he co-wrote and produced for the late Gerald LeVert. This would be Gerald's last gold record before his passing. Craig T is currently touring as M.D/Guitarist with the world-renowned neo-soul & r&b London base group "Loose Ends" and touring guitarist for living legend Ray Parker Jr and also guitarist for the jazz r&b legendary group The Blackbyrds.

 

Whew! Did I get it all? Im sure I left something out but if you want to get some serious sounds first hand, contact Craig T. on his web-site…… WWW.CRAIGTCOOPER.COM or E-mail DARKMN_CRAIGT@MSN.COM and take a look/listen/chat for yourself. You wont be disappointed!!!