“Kool Keith” Cook, a local comedian who looks like a magazine cover model, commands attention before he hits the stage. His fashion look is put together as if he has a personal stylist traveling with him.
It is interesting, how someone who is so funny has such serious style sense. An avid upcycler, his taste puts the “U’ in upscale and unique, without breaking the bank. Now that’s Kool!
What inspires your style? My style is all mood-based; I dress according to how I feel at that moment. Era-wise I’m often inspired by the fashion and style of The Harlem Renaissance, the 1970s, and hip-hop culture.
You have an eye for home decor. How does your personal style translate between home and what you wear? I like unique conversation pieces that are timeless and never go out of style— always fly. Yes, those preferences do translate from my clothes closet to my home decor, which I find the majority of at garage sales, estate sales, etc. My favorites are: The Old Orchard neighborhood sale, which is always the week before The Old West End festival; The Attic Sale, which is every August in Detroit’s historic Boston-Edison neighborhood; and The Old West End Festival yard sales every June.
You host music and open mic events. Define your personal style by a neo soul song? My song would be “How Does It Feel” by D’Angelo. I choose that song because that’s exactly how I get dressed…according to how I feel. Plus, I’m often oiled-up and butt-naked in the mirror while I’m moving, similar to D’Angelo in that particular video. He stole my abs by the way.
What is your go-to look for onstage performances? My typical onstage look is jeans and a collared shirt. I like to dress for the event or venue, so sometimes a suit or tux is required.
What’s the best fashion advice you’ve given and received? DO YOU! Express yourself how you see fit and be confident in your expression. Never edit your fashion statement just because others don’t know how to read you.
What is your signature hat style? How many do you have, and where’s the best place to find them? I wear a plethora of different hats (literally and figuratively). You may catch me rockin’ an “Apple Cap,” which is inspired by my favorite male vocalist Donny Hathaway. I buy my hats from Henry The Hatter in my hometown of Southfield, Michigan. Rappers Raekwon and Nas hipped me to the Kangol “Bugatti” style of hat back in the early 1990s.