John Coltrane & The Cats – “Minor Mishap”

On this day (April 18) in 1957, saxophonist John Coltrane and pianist Tommy Flanagan set out to record an album with trumpeter Idrees Sulieman, guitarist Kenny Burrell, bassist Doug Watkins and drummer Louis Hayes at Rudy Van Gelder’s studio in Hackensack, New Jersey. Somewhat of a novelty agglomeration, this ensemble represented the very best of Prestige Records at the time. When the music was released two years later under Prestige’s New Jazz imprint, producer Bob Weinstock was pressed to give the ensemble a name. Using a much-tossed-around piece of jazz slang, he settled, finally, on “The Cats.” Their self-titled album marks the only recording this group would cut together, and it was released after Coltrane parted ways with Prestige. However, Coltrane and Flanagan would reunite — with far more enduring results — on the saxophonist’s seminal 1960 album Giant Steps. 

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