The young men who comprised the JFK Quintet were looking for greater freedom of expression while never forgetting the elemental black music of their Southern upbringings. The result was a blues-inflected music under the spell of developments put forward by Ornette Coleman and by Miles Davis and Bill Evans in the Davis band that included John Coltrane and Cannonball Adderley. It was Adderley who discovered the band in Washington, D.C. and brought them to public attention by way of this recording. Saxophonist Andrew White went on to become one of the primary chroniclers and transcribers of Coltrane's work. Trumpeter Ray Codrington later recorded with Eddie Harris. Walter Booker, Jr. became Adderley's bassist. Inspired by President John F. Kennedy's concern with new ideas and new policies, they incorporated his initials into the name of their group.
Ray Codrington, Andrew White, Harry Killgo, Walter Booker, Jr., Carl "Mickey" Newman