The death of free-jazz drummer Jerome Cooper on 6 May has been noted by fans and friends in the States. Cooper had been fighting cancer. The last surviving member of the Revolutionary Ensemble, an influential 1971-1977 trio that reunited in the noughties Cooper was 68.
His late-1960s work included appearances with Kalaparusha Maurice McIntyre before he moved to Europe where he played with Rahsaan Roland Kirk, Steve Lacy, and others. Back in the States in the early-1970s the Chicago-born player joined the Revolutionary Ensemble alongside Leroy Jenkins and Sirone, and later in the decade played with Sam Rivers, and George Adams. Cooper was the last of the Revolutionary Ensemble to pass away preceded by violinist Leroy Jenkins, who died in 2007, and bassist Sirone who died in 2009. An exponent of what Cooper termed “multi-dimensional drumming” he appeared on Anthony Braxton’s New York Fall 1974 and six years later Cecil Taylor’s live album It is in the Brewing Luminous. His own records include For The People.
Jerome Cooper top performing in 2014 at a festival in Denmark, and in the audio with The Revolutionary Ensemble on their 1975 album The Psyche