Night Beat - RCA 1963
Cooke has written three of the twelve songs, and all three are among the album's strongest. Best known is probably "Mean Old World", which has both elements of blues and pop. "You Gotta Move" is also figreat with its light arrangement that allows room for a fine acoustic guitar.
A young Billy Preston also helps to put his stamp on "Night Beat" - listen for example to his somewhat unconventional organ playing on "Little Red Rooster"
The traditional "Nobody Knows the Trouble I've Seen" is also given a refreshingly simple arrangement, again, the acoustic guitar clear in the soundstage.
Some of the songs are perhaps a little too neatly arranged to be really interesting, but of course all numbers are well produced with Cooke's voice as the focal point.