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, Parlanto 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.
Gary Walker began performing at the age of 7
it was with his brothers R&B band and at Payne AME Church
singing gospel music,where He cultivated his love and ear for music.
In high school he began to develop a interest in classical music Where he began to study vocal training
under the direction of Mr. Merel Stutzman.
After High School he attended Penn State University as a vocal Major.
Fresh out of collage he went on tour with a local band
"Sonlite" along with his brother they toured the east coat.
Gary after touring moved to the city of Pittsburgh Pa.
It was there that he cultivated his love and ear for jazz.
Various appearances were made
He toured with Ringo Star, Ray Charles
Billy Preston, Richard Groove Holmes,Chick Corea
including three appearances in the Mellon Jazz Festival.
After 4 years of just jazz it was time for a big move
he had his eye set on Los Angeles where he made the move with composer
producer Keyboardist Chris Pappas Gary and Pappas worked together in a touring band on the east coast for 3 years.
In Los Angeles he began studying with world known vocal trainer Seth Riggs
Gary now divides his time between Los Angeles and Asia, Japan, Korea and the Philippines.
Gary walker CD was released in Asia
"Story Book" Lyrics and Music were written along with
Heather Holly and Rob Hoffman.
Christina Aguilera's song writing team,along with.
Chris Pappas,Larry White and Bradford Craig.
Story Book was produced by Chris Pappas
Gary walker AKA Walker has also just completed a maxi dance club single "So Deep" release date January 2006 It Hit 29 on Billboard.
Written by Holly,Pappas,Hoffman.
Paul Jackson Jr.
Oak Ridge Boys
"You think you know" ABC General Hospital
Storybook Gary Walker CMG
Heaven Sent Gary Walker CMG
Gary Walker Independent
Sue Purcell Featured Vocalist Independent
Very Special Angel Featured Vocalist Zanzibar
Move Move Move Featured Vocalist Zanzibar
Gimme The Beat Featured Vocalist Zanzibar
Seikatsu Soko Actor / Vocalist Japan
Top Camera Actor Japan
Stardust Nagoya Actor Japan
National Panasonic Featured Vocalist japan
Asahi Beer Vocalist Japan
Zip FM Interview Japan
FM Katsushika Monthly Pick-up Artist japan
WAMO Pittsburgh Pa.
CBS Eyewitness News CBS
Tribute to Roberto Clemente P.B.S. Hinze Hall
Special Wanda Wilson Show Warner
Entertainment Tonight NBC
Music Fair Japan
"Gung Ho", Factory Worker, Director Ron Howard (1986)
Starring: Michale Keaton,John Turturro,Gedde Watanabe
"Players Club", Club Member, Director Ice Cube
"Letters from a Killer", Director David carson (1998)
Starring: Patrick Swayze,Gia Carides
"She's So Lovely", Homeless Man, Director Nick Cassavetes (1997)
Starring: John Travolta,Sean penn
Autoaxel Theme Song Distributed in Japan
Seth Riggs Vocal
Penn State College Major Vocal
Cynthia Cole Drama
Symphony's Performed with
Midlend Texas Symphony
Major League baseball All Star Game U.S.A Vs Japan
United States National Anthem
Composed a song for R&B Vocalist
"I Miss You"
Tim Goodman & Paul Rozmus
Composed a Hit song in Poland
"Jakbys chcial mi cos powiedziec"
for Polish super star
Hey Gary! As always its wonderful to hear from you! Yeah, when I was young I went to university for voice, but lost it along the way... No sense in going into details, but I have my days. That was a good one. And coming from you, that means a lot. Thank you so much!!! I find that if I`m in tune, then that makes all the difference.
Yes, I`ve met Phillip and I think he knows of me, but we`ve never really talked. I saw him with Maze when Keith Washington was on the same show once. GREAT player! Of course Cliff and I worked together at Pickford. I wish I was closer, in Kyushu waaaaay down on the bottom of this rock! But I KNOW it will be a great gig with the calibre of musicianship you`ve got behind you!!! Gotta VIDEO/RECORD and post it on You Tube.... Have fun my brother and thanks so much for stopping by! IZ
Hey GARY!!! Really nice photo! I just joined this site a few days ago and Dr. Harrison told me you were here so of course I had to stop by and say "hey"! How are things? Hope all is well. I don`t think I ever got a chance to say "Thank You" for writing such a wonderful review on CD Baby about my 1st CD, so Thank YOU! Take care and hit me up and let me know what you are doing! Later....... Respect, IZ
Oh man you are in Tokyo! When you get near Harrisburg us a shout! I will probably be in Pittsburgh next week and want to see Wallace Roney in Philly the 15th but I gotta Pgh. birthday then. What group are you with or is it your thing?