FORT PAYNE, Ala. (WHNT) — ALABAMA’s Randy Owen and Teddy Gentry released statements Thursday, remembering their “friend, cousin, and bandmate” Jeff Cook, who passed away earlier this week.
Cook, an ALABAMA co-founder and guitarist, died Monday, November 7 at his beach home in Destin, Fla. He was 73. Cook had been diagnosed with Parkinson’s disease ten years ago.
He lived to play our music we created together.
He could play any instrument he chose, but his harmonies I’ll miss the most. I’m thankful we got to create music together for over 50 years! Wish we could play ‘My Home’s in Alabama’ one more time.
I’m hurt in a way I can’t describe! To Lisa, thanks for loving him and being there for him to the end. Play on, Jeff. Love you!Randy Owen
The trio played music together for more than 50 years, selling more than 80 million albums and charting 43 No. 1 hits. The group was inducted into the Musicians Hall of Fame and Museum in 2019.
Closer than brothers, we lived together more than with our immediate families. Don’t think I’ve known anyone who loved playing more.
Jeff, along with me and Randy, experienced the highs of undreamed success, as well as some very tough early years. None of us were perfect, but together we had something so special it will never die.
No other guitar player I’ve known had the range of styles Jeff had. No one can take your place. Ever. Rest in peace till we get to jam again.Teddy Gentry
Cook is survived by his wife of 27 years, Lisa Cook, his mother, Betty Cook, brother David Cook, father-in-law Jerrial Williams, brother-in-law Randy Williams, many nieces and nephews, and beloved dogs Blazer and Blakely.
Other world-renowned entertainers also shared their condolences and memories of Cook in statements.
Jeff Cook was a long-time friend and brother as has been Randy and Teddy over all these times passing! This is a heartbreaking loss for all that knew Jeff. ALABAMA is in our prayers. Rest in Peace Jeff. Until the day…Joe Bonsall, Duane Allen, William Lee Golden, and Richard Sterban / The Oak Ridge Boys
We ran a lot of roads together back in the ’80s. I was proud to tour with Alabama for four years! Night after night I watched them create magic like I had never seen before. Jeff was a unique part of the group Alabama and a really good guitar player and fiddle player. We thought we were forever young. This one hits hard. Go rest high on that mountain, Jeff Cook.Lee Greenwood
The last time I played with Jeff Cook was on the 2020 Country Music Cruise. Alabama was one of the headliners that year, and even though Jeff performed several shows throughout the week with Randy and Teddy, he spent most of his nights with me and my dueling piano partner Chrissy Sparks. He sat around our pianos and helped us sing. He and I even played a few numbers together at the pianos. Twenty-seven #1 hits of his own, and Jeff was happy singing the classics. He simply loved the music! My condolences to his family and friends.Tim Atwood
Arrangements for Cook’s “Celebration of Life” service will be announced later. In lieu of flowers, the family asks that donations be made to the Jeff & Lisa Cook Foundation.