Born: 20 July 1956, London, England
Paul Cook first met Steve Jones at Christopher Wren Secondary School in Shepherds Bush. The pair became good friends and while bunking off school in 1972 decided to form a band along with Wally Nightingale. The rest is history…
After the Sex Pistols split in January 1978 Paul – together with Steve Jones – went on to release a series of Sex Pistols singles without John Lydon for use in Malcolm McLaren’s fictionalised satire of the Pistols story ‘The Great Rock n Roll Swindle’. Paul appeared in the movie playing himself and even contributed lead vocals to the version of ‘Silly Thing’ used in the film.
Around the same time, Cook and Jones also appeared with Phil Lynott and Scott Gorham of Thin Lizzy as The Greedy Bastards; and guested on the Johnny Thunders album ‘So Alone’.
The pair then formed a new band The Professionals, releasing four UK singles and the album ‘I Didn’t See It Coming’ in 1981. The Professionals as “The Looters” also starred alongside actor Ray Winstone – and Paul Simonon from The Clash – in the cult 1981 US film ‘Ladies and Gentlemen The Fabulous Stains’.
When The Professionals decided to call it a day in 1982 Paul headed back to London leaving Steve Jones in the USA. 1985 saw Paul resurface in The Chiefs of Relief alongside Matthew Ashman (Bow Wow Wow); later releasing a self-tiled album in 1988.
Paul has made several guest appearances on records by the likes of Vic Goddard (Subway Sect) and most notably Edwyn Collins, who he also toured with throughout the 90’s. In 2004 he joined Phil Collen (Def Leppard) and Simon Laffy to form Man Raze. The band released two albums: ‘Surreal’ and ‘PunkFunkRootsRock’ in 2011.
Despite living on the other side of the world Cook and Jones remain firm friends and still sporadically record together. 2018 saw Steve and Paul team up with Billy Idol and Tony James from Generation X as “Generation Sex” for live shows in the USA.
In 2015 Paul reformed The Professionals with former bass player Paul Myers. Although Steve Jones supported the reformation, he decided not to return and was replaced by singer and guitarist Tom Spencer. The Professionals, with additional members, continue to tour and released the studio album ‘What in the World’ in 2017 featuring guest appearances including Steve Jones, Duff McKagan and Billy Duffy.
Paul still lives in London with his wife and family.
Further information: jointheprofessionals.net
Picture Credits: (Top to Bottom)
Paul Cook, Queen Elizabeth River Boat, River Thames, London 7th June 1977 © Dave Wainright