Miles Davis placed Paul Chambers next to him on the front line during their first engagement at Jazz City. The Miles Davis Quintet drew standing room only crowds at Jazz City. It is highly likely that Kenny Drew was in the audience during this first engagement and impressed with what he heard, approached Paul Chambers to ask him to play on the first session for Jane Fielding’s second Jazz:West album.
Philly Joe Jones and Paul Chambers at Jazz City, February 1956.
The John Coltrane Reference contains several references to the Jazz City engagements:
The Jazz:West recording session for Paul Chambers is covered in my recent history of the label. The session was most likely set up during the first engagement at Jazz City when Chambers participated in the first recording session for Jane Fielding’s second album for Jazz:West (on January 21 after the quintet closed at Jazz City and before they headed north for the engagement at the Black Hawk). When Miles Davis brushed off Herb Kimmel’s invitation to play [uncredited] on Chambers’s Jazz:West date, this might have been a factor in Miles Davis’s decision to split for New York?
Miles Davis and his new quintet made several appearances in St. Louis where they played Peacock Alley. The following CD release has also been placed in 1957, not 1956.
A local jazz fan, Bernie Thrasher, photographed the quintet at Peacock Alley.