Colin was in the group that was opening for Brubeck. I knew he had tremendous chops, but when I saw and heard him play in person, I just had to have that technique.
For two weeks, as soon as Joe woke up every day, there I was with the practice pad. Six weeks later he joined the Vince Guaraldi Trio, and played clubs in San Francisco, including several months at the Trident in Sausalito, and other well known clubs such as The Blackhawk and Jazz Workshop.
This was the start of a life long friendship between Colin & Joe. That same kind of friendship happened with The Victor Feldman Trio's Victor and Monty Budwig (the great bass player) and Colin. In September of 1963, Colin was called to sub for Tony Williams in the new Miles Davis Quintet. Miles had spent several nights at The Scene (the club that Colin was playing in with Victor Feldman) because he wanted Victor to be the piano player in his new band. There were more jazz greats to play for on various shows: Cannonball Adderly, Errol Garner, Lionel Hampton, Carmen Mc Rae, and Mel Torme. In 1979 Colin moved to Dallas to work in the jingle scene that was thriving there at that time.
Over the next 32 years they worked on many recordings, T. Miles’ group had been booked at another jazz club in L. Victor surprisingly declined, and Miles hired Herbie Hancock. He became a drum teacher at North Texas State University from 1982-84.
When Miles and the Band got to the club for a sound check there were some people there from some kind of board that said Tony, who was only 16 at the time, was too young to play in such a place! As a member of the rhythm section, Colin got to play for guest artists Duke Ellington, Count Basie, Dizzy Gillespie, Sarah Vaughan, Mel Torme, and June Christy, among others. He played most week-ends with Red Garland at a club in Dallas.
Miles needed a drummer, and having heard Colin with Victor, he called him to fill in for a couple of nights until they could sneak Tony in. In 1967, Colin started a twelve year studio career in L. In 1983 Colin joined the Richie Cole group Alto Madness, travelled to Japan and Europe, and toured the U. It was tough because he was still doing the teaching job as well.
It wasn’t long before Colin got a call from Dick Bock, the owner of World Pacific Jazz record label, to play on a single track with Clare Fischer, with Albert Stinson on bass.
Dick said the reason he hired Colin was because he heard “Cast Your Fate.” That session became a whole record because Dick liked the way the trio played together.
Joe Pass had recently signed with World Pacific Jazz records.
Using the same personnel (Clare, Albert and Colin) the album Catch Me was recorded. and on the road was extensive, playing and recording with, among others: Joe Pass, Victor Feldman, Joe Williams, Benny Goodman, George Shearing, Chet Baker, Hampton Hawes, Jim Hall, Red Mitchell, Roger Kellaway, Phil Woods, Pete Jolly, Ray Brown, Tommy Flanagan, Terry Gibbs, Buddy De Franco, Jimmy Rowles, Barney Kessel, Herb Ellis, Joao Gilberto, Peggy Lee, Tony Bennett, Coleman Hawkins, Gerry Mulligan, Michel Legrand, Dave Grusin, Harry ‘Sweets’ Edison, Clare Fischer, and Blossom Dearie. sound tracks that include: Emmy Awards, Fred Astaire Easter Show, Julie Andrews Show, Merv Griffin, and The Charlie Brown Christmas and A Boy Named Charlie Brown (Linus and Lucy specials with Vince Guaraldi.) He subbed for Ed Shaughnessy on the Tonight Show with Johnny Carson for six years, and the Carol Burnett Show. shows he played for every kind of music, from Beverly Sills (Opera) to James Brown.
They worked at places like The Macambo, on the Sunset Strip and La Papillon. group in Europe with actor George Raft and singers Louise Albritton and June Clyde.
When Phil worked there, Howard Hughes had the best table in the house, and it was reserved every night for him. No matter how crowded the place was, that table was empty. The troupe toured England and North Africa, and spent time in Italy.
He also played on albums by Mel Torme, Peggy Lee, and Rosemary Clooney.