September 19, 2017

We Wish Ray Cooper a Very Happy Birthday

Elton's percussionist extraordinaire celebrates his special day.

Ray Cooper has performed with a wide variety of musicians in his long career but he is perhaps best known for his work with Elton, which began when he played tambourine and other percussion instruments on three songs on the Madman Across The Water album in 1971.

L: Elton helps Ray on percussion duties during the 1976 tour. (Photo: David Nutter) R: Ray warms up the vibes at AIR Lyndhurst Studios during the 'Made In England' sessions. (Photo: John F. Higgins)

Since then he has played on over 90 studio tracks, including the majority of Elton’s 1995 album Made In England (his tambourine drives the rocker Pain and his shaker hypnotically anchors Blessed) and six songs on Elton’s most recent album, Wonderful Crazy Night (2016). When Elton wrote the music to the song Tambourine on that album, he made sure to invite Ray to play the title instrument on the recording.

Ray has performed nearly 800 concerts to date with Elton. He will add to that total when the next Million Dollar Piano shows resume on October 11 at Caesars Palace in Las Vegas, NV.

To find out more about Ray, visit our Elton John Band page.

Fans and all of us at wish you a very happy birthday, Ray, and are looking forward to seeing you again soon!

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