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
Joseph Jerome Kennedy III passed away suddenly on May 1, 2018, at his home in Pittsburgh, Pennsylvania at the age of 75. Joe Kennedy III was born on April 17, 1943 to the late Joseph J. Kennedy Jr. and Thelma M. “Jennifer” (Copeland) Kennedy. He married Jean Carolyn Megginson on June 25, 1966, in Washington, D.C., a union that lasted over 51 years.
After graduating from Maggie L. Walker High School in Richmond, Virginia in 1961, Joe Kennedy III earned his Bachelor of Science and Masters Degrees in Music Education from Duquesne University in 1965 and 1971, respectively. Kennedy was an accomplished composer and arranger, as well as a skilled pianist and French Hornist who served as one of the first three African-Americans in the Pittsburgh Symphony Orchestra. During the day, Kennedy taught music in the Pittsburgh Public Schools for 42 years, becoming the highest rated Instructional Teacher Leader (Master Teacher) in the Pittsburgh Public Schools, and chairing the committee that developed the city’s Magnet Schools curriculum, which Newsweek magazine hailed as the best in the world. At night, along with vocalist Frank LaVelle, Kennedy was a member of the popular musical duo Kennedy & LaVelle, the city’s highest paid nightclub act in the 1960s and 70s.
Joe Kennedy III was an active member of East Liberty Presbyterian Church, where he was an ordained Deacon and served as the leader of the Contemporaries Adult Sunday School class, as a member of the East End Cooperative Ministries shelter meal team, and as the leader of the Men’s Fellowship.
A Memorial Service will be held on Saturday, May 12, 2018 at 11:00 a.m. at East Liberty Presbyterian Church (ELPC), followed by a light reception. Joe is survived by his wife, Jean C. Kennedy; son, Joseph J. Kennedy IV; sister, Victoria Lynne Kennedy; sisters-in-law Theressa Turner and Valeria Megginson; brother-in-law Lorenzo Megginson (Jackie); and a host of relatives, friends, fans and former students. In lieu of flowers, the family encourages memorial contributions to The African American Jazz Preservation Society of Pittsburgh, P.O. Box 8240, Pittsburgh, PA 15217

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