Born: December 20, 1982 Primary Instrument: Vocal
Cook was the lead singer and guitarist of the band Axium from 1999 until 2006. He formed Axium in his junior year of high school with drummer Bobby Kerr. One of the band's songs, Hold, was picked up by AMC Theatres Movie Tunes and was played before previews on over 20,000 screens nationwide.
Axium was also named one of the top 15 independent bands in the country in the Got Milk? independent band contest, and it was chosen as the best band in Kansas City in 2004.
In 2006, after the breakup of Axium, Cook relocated to Tulsa, Oklahoma, and joined the regional touring band Midwest Kings (MWK), playing guitar, bass, and singing backup vocals. He recorded one EP, Incoherent with Desire to Move On, with the band in 2006.
Cook released a solo independent album, Analog Heart, in 2006, for which he also designed the artwork. The album was chosen as the fourth- best CD released in 2006 by website Music Equals Life. Cook also won the Urban Tulsa Weekly's Absolute Best of Tulsa award for Best Locally Produced, Independent Album in 2007.
He had completed recording his sophomore album before his appearance on American Idol. Over the weekend of April 18 to April 20, 2008, Analog Heart was listed as the number one album for Today's Top MP3 Albums on Amazon.com. Soon there after, the album was removed from Amazon.
For the Billboard chart week ending May 25, 2008, a week following Cook's American Idol victory, Cook broke several Billboard chart records. Most notable was his record shattering feat of having eleven songs debut on the Hot 100 that week, beating the previous record set by Miley Cyrus (Hannah Montana) in 2006 when she had six songs debut on the chart.
Cook's first single, The Time of My Life led the pack, debuting at #3 on the Hot 100. Cook's eleven charting songs also gave him the most songs by one artist on the Hot 100 of any week in the Nielsen SoundScan era (which began in 1991), and the most of any era since The Beatles placed 14 songs on the chart the week of April 11, 1964. In addition, that same week Cook also broke the record for the most debuts on Billboard's Hot Digital Songs chart, where he placed 14 debut entries, the record of which was previously six set by Bon Jovi in 2007. Cook's 17 entries had a combined total of 944,000 digital downloads in the first week of selling. The song also reached #61 in the UK due to downloads alone.
Cook worked with Ed Roland (Collective Soul), Zac Maloy (The Nixons), Jason Wade (Lifehouse), Neal Tiemann (MWK) , Kevin Griffin (Better Than Ezra) and Raine Maida (Our Lady Peace) on his album, Light On released November 18, 2008. The producer for the album Rob Cavallo. Cook has also signed an endorsement deal with Skechers that will run through December 2009.
Cook had spent the summer on the grueling American Idol arena tour. With his record scheduled for release on November 18th, that gave him only one uninterrupted month in the studio.
Cook wrote or co-wrote most of the songs on the record, drawing on both recent collaborations with songwriting pros and tunes he wrote in his pre- Idol bartending days. (His old guitarist actually plays on the album.) A preview of eight tracks suggests that listeners can expect radio-ready anthems like the sweeping, U2-esque “Come Back to Me, some aggro rockers like “Bar Bi Sol and plenty of the soaring voice that the AI judges loved.