New York City’s Five Spot Cafe stands as one of the quintessential wellsprings for the avant-garde movement in jazz. When gentrification of Greenwich Village drove up rents in the mid-1950’s, the starving artists and musicians who had called it home since the 1920’s began to gravitate to the seedier confines of the Bowery. In 1956, the old Number 5 Bar on Cooper Square acquired a cabaret license, changed its name to the Five Spot Cafe, and began featuring live jazz. The neighborhood’s edgy and artsy residents, who included painters Willem de Kooning, Franz Kline and Larry Rivers, soon made the Five Spot their local watering hole and the best of New York’s young, experimental jazz players soon followed. Cecil Taylor had the first real engagement at the Five Spot, and subsequently brought in saxophonist Steve Lacy to join him. A few months later, Thelonious Monk was hired for a six-month gig, and he brought in John Coltrane—temporarily estranged from Miles Davis—on tenor. Bootleg recordings of this gig are supplemented by studio recordings made around the same time, as well as a Town Hall concert that year, but the Five Spot sort of defines that era of the Monk-Trane collaboration. In 1959, the Five Spot hosted the New York debut of Ornette Coleman’s groundbreaking group for an engagement that ended up lasting over two months. They returned for a four month stay the next year, and between the two gigs, audience members included Leonard Bernstein, Miles Davis, Coltrane and just about every other curious musician on the East Coast. Other famous Five Spot bookings included Eric Dolphy and Kenny Burrell, and there were at least half a dozen great live albums made there before it moved—and began deemphasizing jazz—in 1962.