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Richard David Cook (7 February 1957 – 25 August 2007) was a British jazz writer, magazine editor and former record company executive. Sometimes credited as R. D. Cook, Cook was born in Kew, Surrey, and lived in west London as an adult. A writer on music from the late 1970s until he died, Cook was co-author, with Brian Morton, of The Penguin Guide to Jazz Recordings (formerly ...on CD), which lasted for ten editions until 2010. Richard Cook's Jazz Companion and It's About That Time: Miles Davis On and Off the Record were published in 2005.
Cook began as a staff writer for NME in the early-1980s. The editor at the time, Neil Spencer, commented that he "would take on the pieces that the fashion-oriented shunned - a Roxy Music review, an audience with a fading star, a piece on the emergent sounds of Africa". He was later the jazz critic for The Sunday Times, a music writer for the New Statesman. Cook was formerly editor of The Wire, when it was a jazz-centred periodical (it broadened its coverage towards the end of his editorship), and edited Jazz Review magazine from its foundation in 1998. Jazz Review continued for a time after his death, using Cook's approach to the music as continuing inspiration; it did not name a specific successor (Morton) for six months. Cook also presented a programme on jazz for BBC local radio GLR.
Cook was the UK jazz catalogue manager for PolyGram (1992���97) and also produced albums by the trumpeter Guy Barker. During his spell at PolyGram, Cook launched the short-lived 'Redial' re-issue line of classic British jazz albums. In 2002, he was responsible for issuing a 10 CD limited-edition set by the American avant-garde pianist Cecil Taylor of 1990 recordings, 2 Ts for a Lovely T, on the Codanza label.
- Morton, Brian (1 September 2007). "Richard Cook: Jazz writer and editor". The Independent. Archived from the original on 1 October 2007.
- "Richard Cook, Journalist and Author of Books on Jazz, Dies at 50". The New York Times. 13 September 2007. Retrieved 18 May 2020.
- Fordham, John (25 September 2007). "Richard Cook". The Guardian. Retrieved 18 May 2020.
- "Richard Cook". The Times. 12 September 2007. Retrieved 18 May 2020. (subscription required)