Joe Cook’s interest in boats began in earnest when he and four friends, (in some obvious lapse of sanity following a food fight with a honeydew melon,) bought a decrepit (but basically solid) 22-foot 1958 Henry Luhrs Jersey Sea Skiff and began the arduous task of restoring her. Six weeks, a lot of scraped knuckles, a lot of noxious fumes inhaled, and nobody knows exactly how much money later, the Honeydew was launched for many years of pleasant, and sometimes exciting, navigation on Nashville’s Percy Priest Reservoir.
Joe’s first taste of bluewater sailing was on a couple of week-long voyages as crew/passenger on the Bahama Star, a 57 foot Wellington sloop, sailing out of Miami Beach through the Biminis and the Berry Islands. In October 2010, he had the opportunity to work as Guest Crew on the Pride of Baltimore II on her voyage from Boston to New York.
As for the music, between bouts of classical choirs and musical theatre, Joe spent thirty years in and around the Nashville bluegrass scene, including being a founding member of Cordless, a non-traditional traditional band performing original songs as well as an eclectic mix that included Louvin Brothers and Roy Orbison covers. Cordless released two CD’s , “The Number Three” (2003) and “Home Is Where Your Stuff Is” (2005).
Joe met his wife Leslie at a music festival in Tennessee and she shanghaied him away from the neon rainbow of Nashville to the Old-Time Appalachian Music scene of Yellow Springs, Ohio. He is still trying to learn the language. He and Leslie play with John and Janet Schomburg in the Old-Time novelty band, The Wild Hares.