Pain Relief Beyond Belief





From Blakey to Brown, Como to Costa, Eckstine to Eldridge, Galbraith to Garner, Harris to Hines, Horne to Hyman, Jamal to Jefferson, Kelly to Klook; Mancini to Marmarosa, May to Mitchell, Negri to Nestico, Parlan to Ponder, Reed to Ruther, Strayhorn to Sullivan, Turk to Turrentine, Wade to Williams… the forthcoming publication Treasury of Pittsburgh Jazz Connections by Dr. Nelson Harrison and Dr. Ralph Proctor, Jr. will document the legacy of one of the world’s greatest jazz capitals.


Do you want to know who Dizzy Gillespie  idolized? Did you ever wonder who inspired Kenny Clarke and Art Blakey? Who was the pianist that mentored Monk, Bud Powell, Tad Dameron, Elmo Hope, Sarah Vaughan and Mel Torme? Who was Art Tatum’s idol and Nat Cole’s mentor? What musical quartet pioneered the concept adopted later by the Modern Jazz Quartet? Were you ever curious to know who taught saxophone to Stanley Turrentine or who taught piano to Ahmad Jamal? What community music school trained Robert McFerrin, Sr. for his history-making debut with the Metropolitan Opera? What virtually unknown pianist was a significant influence on young John Coltrane, Shirley Scott, McCoy Tyner, Bobby Timmons and Ray Bryant when he moved to Philadelphia from Pittsburgh in the 1940s?  Would you be surprised to know that Erroll Garner attended classes at the Julliard School of Music in New York and was at the top of his class in writing and arranging proficiency?


Some answers  can be gleaned from the postings on the Pittsburgh Jazz Network.


For almost 100 years the Pittsburgh region has been a metacenter of jazz originality that is second to no other in the history of jazz.  One of the best kept secrets in jazz folklore, the Pittsburgh Jazz Legacy has heretofore remained mythical.  We have dubbed it “the greatest story never told” since it has not been represented in writing before now in such a way as to be accessible to anyone seeking to know more about it.  When it was happening, little did we know how priceless the memories would become when the times were gone.


Today jazz is still king in Pittsburgh, with events, performances and activities happening all the time. The Pittsburgh Jazz Network is dedicated to celebrating and showcasing the places, artists and fans that carry on the legacy of Pittsburgh's jazz heritage.






Duke Ellington is first African-American and the first musician to solo on U.S. circulating coin



       In Her Own Words

Phat Man Dee & Amoeba Knievel CD Release! Presented by Creative.Life.Support at Mr Smalls Theatre!

Event Details

Phat Man Dee & Amoeba Knievel CD Release! Presented by Creative.Life.Support at Mr Smalls Theatre!

Time: September 24, 2014 from 6pm to 11pm
Location: Mr Smalls Theatre
Street: 400 Lincoln Ave.
City/Town: Millvale, PA
Website or Map:
Phone: 412-821-4447
Event Type: cd, release, concert
Organized By: Phat Man Dee
Latest Activity: Aug 26, 2014

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Event Description

Creative.Life.Support and Mr. Smalls Theatre Present  a Dual CD Release with Phat Man Dee and Tommy Amoeba!

Phat Man Dee and Tommy Amoeba to release cd’s at the same event!

Wednesday September 24th, 2014

Doors at 6 p.m, Show at 7 p.m., All Ages, Free show if 21 +, or $2 if under 21 

Mr. Smalls Theatre, 400 Lincoln Ave, Millvale, PA 15209

Phat Man Dee is releasing her fourth studio album “Hey Phat Chick! (You had it Comin’ to Ya!”). The title track “Hey Phat Chick!” is the musical story of one Phat girl’s journey from a punk rock circus sideshow marvel to full

blown jazz diva. The song “Hey Phat Chick!” is an anthem which describes her artistic journeys across the nation with various independent performance troupes. “Why Wait?” is a song which Mandee wrote after she felt she had spent too much time mourning those she loved in song, after they had already passed on. Mandee wanted to have a song to let people know she loved them now, while they are still alive, so they could enjoy it before it is too late to say, “I love you”.  Mandee also chose to sing two French songs, one by Georges Brassens “La Mauvaise Reutation” because it’s story of celebrating one’s alienation from the expected norms rang true to her own experience in life. She chose to sing “Sur Deux Notes” a song made popular by Josephine Baker, as she has always admired Ms. Baker’s struggle and incredible triumph as an artistic beauty, dancer and singer, during a time when women of color were expected to clean and not run off to France and start dance companies. 


This album features original tunes with lush arrangements by internationally traveled bassist Tony DePaolis, and features the Steel City Horns which includes: Reggie Watkins, Roby Edwards,

and Ron Horton.  The rhythm section features jazz favorites Tony DePaolis, Cliff Barnes, Michael Murray, Carlos Peña and JT “Smitty” Smith.  Guest vocalists include Cordell Gibson and Liz Berlin.

Amoeba Knievel (fronted by Phat Man Dee's husband of 12 years, Tommy Amoeba) is proud to release their unprecedented and inaugural recording, “This Is Only a Test” of all original songs penned by Tommy Amoeba.   Most of the songs celebrate his love of pop culture and it’s impact on his life, even as they stand as metaphors for, and commentary on, his life.  Sci-fi themed rock ballad “Scanners Live in Vain” starts off the album. It’s based on the futuristic story by Cordwainer Smith, wherein a special pilot called a “Scanner” strips himself of all senses except sight, in order to fly a faster-than-light spacecraft.  A new breed of pilot comes along who could do the job without removing any senses, however, leaving the Scanners somewhat in the dust. 

“Growing up in a town with rusted-out steel mills,” states Tommy, “it was easy to identify with the scanners plight.”

Other local entertainers performing at this dynamic dual release of music and mayhem to include:

*Lilith Deville

*Pittsburgh Complaints N’At Choir


*Middle Children

This event is being held under the auspices of Mr. Smalls Theatre’s non-profit educational arm Creative.Life.Support. through it’s Revival series.

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