JAY COOK 1941-2004


I've delayed posting this but it needs to be done. My friend of some forty years and partner in the Blue Kangaroo for over thirty of those years, is gone. He succumbed to complications from lung cancer February 3rd. Jay went peacefully without pain with his wife, Leslie and sister Jill with him at the end. Needless to say, this leaves a huge hole in the lives of a host of family, friends, acquaintances, fans, etc. I know that our 30 years in full time show biz touched the lives of a lot of people, but I've been amazed at the volume of messages from everyone, everywhere, including several other countries. All the kind words are appreciated by Leslie, Jill and I. I know that Leslie, in particular, would like to express sincere appreciation and thanks to all.


We've also lost a great wit and that goofy sense of humor that went with it. I got to spend a lot of my life just cracking up at Japaid for it. I'd like to have a dollar for everytime we talked about our great fortune to have the career we had. Way too much fun.


I'd have to say that both of us were philisophically predisposed to just having a good time and were really lucky to be successful at anything. That isn't quite true, of course. I can say with absolute authority that Jay Cook was an excellent musician and could play damn near anything with strings and a bunch of instruments that didn't have strings. I guess we earned our success. Sure was a great 30 years. Hope that everyone that reads this got to be part of it. Those Australia and Waikiki days were the best of all times.


It would be great to think we could hook up in the happy hunting ground and do it all again, but before he went, I told Jay to check when he got where he was going to see if there was any beer there and get back to me. I told him if there's no beer, I'm not going. I'm not quite sure what options that leaves me, but I'll deal with it.


Life will be different for those of us left behind, now, but such is the natural progression of things. Feel good about the life of Jay Cook. He enjoyed some serious quality. He may have gone a tad early, but he really got some great licks in. Remember the laughs and all those great times. Although it's tough to avoid, he wouldn't have the rest of us being down long.


In his memory, you might want to donate to the American Cancer Society or the Humane Society. You also might come down really hard on smoking whenever and wherever you see it. And even though most of you are lot older now, you might want to go out and suck down some Jack Daniels and beer and do something totally lacking in dignity. If you get some laughs out of was worth it. I hope I never get too old to do something stupid. My friends assure me that I won't.


All the best,


Mike Drager

The Last Half of the Blue Kangaroo





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