In late 1949 and 1950, the Miles Davis nonet recorded 12 songs in New York arranged by Gil Evans (two songs), John Carisi (one), John Lewis (two) and Gerry Mulligan (seven). The music was unusual in that it seemed to apply the relaxed feel of the Claude Thornhill Orchestra to bebop.

Of the dozen songs recorded in January and April of 1949 and March of 1950, only six were initially released by Capitol in the 78-rpm era. Jeru and Godchild were paired, along with Move and Budo from the January 1949 session and Israel and Boplicity from the April 1949 recording date. Sales of the 78s were lackluster, and club dates by the nonet received a yawn from critics.