The Cookies

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The Cookies
The Cookies 1962.jpg
The Cookies in 1962
Background information
Origin Brooklyn, New York City, New York, United States
Genres R&B, Pop, Soul
Years active19541958;
Labels Lamp/Aladdin Records
Atlantic Records
Dimension Records
Associated acts The Raelettes
Ray Charles
Past membersDarlene McCrea
Margie Hendricks
Earl-Jean McCrea
Dorothy Jones
Beulah Robertson
Margaret Ross

The Cookies were an American R&B girl group active in two distinct lineups, the first from 1954 to 1958 which later became The Raelettes, and the second from 1961 to 1967. Several of the members of both lineups were members of the same family. Both lineups were most prominent as session singers and backing vocalists.



Formed in 1954 in Brooklyn, New York, United States, the Cookies originally consisted of Dorothy Jones, Darlene McCrea and Dorothy's cousin, Beulah Robertson. [1] In 1956, Robertson was replaced by Margie Hendricks (Hendrix). The group was introduced to Ray Charles through their session work for Atlantic Records. In 1958, The Cookies performed with Ray Charles and Ann Fisher for the Cavalcade of Jazz concert produced by Leon Hefflin Sr., held at the Shrine Auditorium in Los Angeles, on August 3. The other headliners were Little Willie John, Sam Cooke, Ernie Freeman, and Bo RhamboSammy Davis Jr. was there to crown the winner of the Miss Cavalcade of Jazz beauty contest. [2] After backing Charles and other Atlantic Records artists, McCrea and Hendricks helped form the Raelettes in 1958. [1] Pat Lyles was a Raelette, but never a Cookie.

Second lineup

In 1961, a new version of the Cookies emerged in New York, with Dorothy Jones joining newcomers Earl-Jean McCrea (Darlene's younger sister) and another of Dorothy's cousins, Margaret Ross. Jones also recorded one solo recording for Columbia in 1961. This trio had the greatest success as the Cookies: under their own name; as backing vocals for other artists, including Neil Sedaka's hit songs "Breaking Up Is Hard to Do", "The Dreamer" and "Bad Girl"; and recording demos for Aldon Music, under the direction of Carole King and Gerry Goffin. [3] They provided the backup vocals for the Little Eva hit song, "The Loco-Motion", [3] as well as her follow-up hit "Let's Turkey Trot", both from 1962; and for Mel Tormé's hit version of "Comin' Home Baby". [4] They scored their biggest hit in 1963 with the song "Don't Say Nothin' Bad (About My Baby)", which reached number 3 on the Billboard R&B chart and #7 on the Billboard Pop chart. [1]

A 1962 hit, "Chains", was recorded by the Beatles on their debut release Please Please Me . [1] Earl-Jean McCrea left the group in 1965 after two solo singles, which included the first recording of the Goffin/King song, "I'm Into Something Good", made famous by Hermans Hermits.

The Cookies also released several recordings under other names, mostly with Margaret Ross on lead vocals. Their alternative names on recordings were the Palisades (Chairman), the Stepping Stones (Philips), the Cinderellas (Dimension) and the Honey Bees (Fontana 1939 only); record labels are given in brackets. [3]

In April 1967, they released their last record, produced by the Tokens. Darlene McCrea returned to replace her sister for this recording.

Margie Hendrix died on July 14, 1973, at the age of 38.

Dorothy Jones died in Columbus, Ohio, from complications of Alzheimer's disease on December 25, 2010, at the age of 76. [3]

Darlene McCrea died from cancer on February 4, 2013. [5]

Margaret Ross, now Margaret Williams, tours today as the Cookies with new back-up singers. She also performs with Barbara Harris and the Toys occasionally.



Dorothy, Beulah, and Margaret were first cousins; their respective mothers were sisters. Beulah and Margaret were not members of the group during the same period, but both performed with Dorothy. Darlene and Earl-Jean were sisters, but were not members of the group during the same period.


Discography as backup singers

Related Research Articles

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